CrossTalk: Revolt in the West

February 23, 2017

The West appears to have entered into a new era – the era of the political upsets, growing anger, and increased disillusionment with ruling elites. It is not a question of leftwing – rightwing politics. It is all about a failing status quo.

CrossTalking with Stephen Haseler, Marcus Papadopoulos, and Joaquin Flores.

Trump and Gorbachev ترامب وغورباتشوف

Trump and Gorbachev

فبراير 22, 2017

Written by Nasser Kandil,

Whether Mikhail Gorbachev was an agent to the US intelligence as accused by his opponents or not, and whether Donald Trump was an agent to the Russian intelligence as accused by his opponents or not, the aspects of similarity in the circumstances which brought them to the rule, and the conditions in which each one rules, as well as the roles which are represented by each one of them in the history of the superpower where both of them stood at the top of the pyramid in it are elements that allow the objective comparison between the two figures.

Gorbachev has led the Soviet Union after the defeat in a war that was the first war which he launched within an offensive plan outside the borders after the World War II, through the entry of his troops to Afghanistan, it was not mere an arming support for an ally or a circumstantial escalation of a position. That defeat led to the rise of the popular resentment in the Russian community entitled the compliant from spending on wars, the glories of the greatness, and the rise of voices that called for the priority of paying attention and concern to the declining Russian interior, that suffered economically and socially, and where the services were retracted and its infrastructure was eroded. While Trump is leading America after a resounding defeat of many wars that were the first after the World War II which aimed to extend the influence of the American leadership in the world in an offensive way and within an imperial campaign not within the context of an involvement in a war, its beginning was the support of an allied regime or a subordinate as the wars of Vietnam and Korea. It adopted a slogan of the invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan in the beginning and then overthrowing Syria. As a result of the defeat there were escalated claims to abandon the pursuit behind the role of the world policeman, while America internally is retracting economically and socially as described by Trump himself in his electoral campaign in terms of unemployment, the declining services, and the imminent collapse of the infrastructure, so he launched his slogan America first, in confronting this situation.

Trump’s campaigns against the ideological media which is dominated by him in a factional way are similar to Gorbachev’s ones launched against the ideological media, moreover the escalating campaigns of Trump against the intelligence are similar to Gorbachev’s ones. The two men are in a battle with the elites of their countries that led their global aspect namely the media and the intelligence. The racist white calls of Trump against the US interior are similar to the Russian Gorbachev’s white calls against the countries of the Soviet Union and which were looking to get rid of them as burdens. Trump’s battles with the economic blocs which monopolize the US economy in favor of the minority of the owners and workers, versus the decline of the sectors which employ most of the Americans and which their owners are distributed on a major faction of the owners of the capitals represented by Trump are similar to the battles of Gorbachev against the possession of the country of the huge economies and the marginalization of the rising capital. Both of them raises the slogan of the balance of the economy’s aspects through perestroika project for the reconstruction, and a direct contact with the people as nominated Glasnost by Gorbachev, and which is translated by Trump in his daily tweets on Twitter.

Gorbachev considered that the reason of the bottleneck of the Soviet Union especially Russia was due to the useless investment on the race of arming as a tax for the global leadership, and that the weighing of the private sector in the economy will lead to the recovery of the middle class and the structures of the useful production. Trump considers that the economic bottleneck of America is due to the tax which it pays as a cost for the global leadership, either through spreading huge forces outside the borders to protect rich allies that do not pay anything as Japan, Europe, and the Gulf or through economic facilities for the poor allies within agreements that led to the weakness of the US economy as the agreement with Argentina and the countries of the Pacific which is known as NAFTA. The two men converge on the call to liberate their countries from these burdens as a way for the economic recovery and the getting out of the bottleneck and recession.

Gorbachev’s policies which based on removing the dominance of the country on the major economic sectors have led to a big decline of the earnings and the weakness in the country’s ability to spend, so the market declined and became weaker. There were new economic powers that quickly handled the economy of the market including the enormous class differences in the community. Russia within ten years emerged as a country from the third world after the disintegration of the Soviet Union, the fall of the socialist system, and the collapse of its military alliance entitled Warsaw Pact which most of its countries moved to the West under the title of the European Union or NATO. The question which faces Trump and his project is whether the linking of the military deployment with the paying of its costs by the allies will lead to the regression of the influence on the allies and thus on the world, and whether weakening the giant intercontinental enterprises in favor of the US national companies which depend on the US market will lead to the confusion in the qualitative importance of the US currency in the world markets and to the bankruptcies as a result of the scarcity of the external resources and the revenues of the speculation of the US banks, and whether all of that will open the debate about the justification of sticking to the dollar as a mandatory international currency in the banking transactions and in the US banks as a knot for the passage of the financial transactions in the world. The dollar and banking currency are the last ways for protecting the US leadership in the world, and they are translated by the sanctions through which America is threatening all of its opponents.

It is striking that the Jewish community in each of Russia and America is supporting these two men, and it is striking their excessive enthusiasm toward Israel. Israel’s interest in Gorbachev was confined with making the international arena in favor of America while through the Israeli weakness it is enough from Trump to submit an ally in America which does not believe that Israel is in need of who can save it from itself and from its arrogance, on the contrary to share with it this arrogance, an ally that reassures its settlers that they have an ally that does not argue with them, as it is striking how the fall of the Soviet Union was the insurance policy for a quarter of a century for Israel which was facing with the rise of Gorbachev a valiant Palestinian uprising that is known by the uprising of stones and an active Lebanese resistance that has already  liberated half of the occupied territories. But the US monopoly of ruling the world was as a momentum for Israel to overcome many threats and crises, while the instability of America today coincides with the entry of Israel into deadly existential crisis, where it does not have an insurance policy. It is striking as well that at the time of the Russian regression America has rushed to fill the gap, and at the time of the American regression Russia rushes to fill the gap, so the history repeats that powerfully but harshly… this is history.

The paradox here is that Gorbachev has waged the battle of changing the Soviet Union at the spokesman of the cultivated elegant elites against whom he described by (the bullies) while Trump is waging his battle as a “bully” who fights the pedant elites . It is enough to notice the language of Trump.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

ترامب وغورباتشوف

ناصر قنديل

– سواء أكان ميخائيل غورباتشوف عميلاً للمخابرات الأميركية، كما يتّهمه خصومه أم لم يكن، وسواء كان دونالد ترامب عميلاً للمخابرات الروسية، كما يتّهمه خصومه أم لم يكن، فإنّ أوجه التشابه في الظروف التي أوصلت كلا من الرجلين إلى الحكم، والظروف التي يحكم فيها كل منهما، والأدوار التي يمثلها كل منهما في تاريخ الدولة العظمى التي وقف على رأس الهرم فيها، عناصر تسمح بالمقارنة الموضوعية بينهما.

– تولّى غورباتشوف قيادة الاتحاد السوفياتي بعد هزيمة في حرب كانت الأولى التي قام بها ضمن خطة هجومية خارج الحدود بعد الحرب العالمية الثانية عبر دخول قواته إلى أفغانستان، وليست دعماً تسليحياً لحليف أو تصعيداً ظرفياً لموقف فقط، وترتّب على هذه الهزيمة صعود نقمة شعبية في المجتمع الروسي عنوانها التذمّر من الإنفاق على الحروب وأمجاد العظمة، وارتفاع أصوات تنادي بأولوية الانتباه والاهتمام لداخل روسي يتداعى ويعاني اقتصادياً واجتماعياً، وتتراجع الخدمات فيه وبناه التحتية تتآكل بينما يتولى ترامب قيادة أميركا بعد هزيمة مدوّية لحروب، هي الأولى بعد الحرب العالمية الثانية الهادفة لتمديد نفوذ الزعامة الأميركية في العالم هجومياً ضمن حملة إمبراطورية وليست ضمن سياق تورّط بحرب، بدايتها دعم نظام حليف أو تابع كحروب فييتنام وكوريا، واتخذت عنوان غزو العراق وأفغانستان بداية وإسقاط سورية لاحقاً، وتصاعدت بأثر الهزيمة المطالبات بالتخلّي عن اللهاث وراء دور شرطي العالم، بينما أميركا في الداخل تتراجع اقتصادياً واجتماعياً، كما وصفها ترامب نفسه في حملته الانتخابية لجهة البطالة وتراجع الخدمات وتداعي البنى التحتية، وأطلق في مواجهة هذه الحال شعاره «أميركا أولاً».

– تتشابه حملات ترامب على الإعلام العقائدي المسيطر عليه فئوياً بالحملات التي شنّها غورباتشوف على الإعلام الايديولوجي، كما تتصاعد حملات ترامب على المخابرات بما يستعيد حملات غورباتشوف المشابهة والرجلان في معركة مع نُخَب بلديهما التي قادت طابعهما العالمي، الذي مثّل الإعلام والمخابرات جناحيه، وتتشابه أيضاً دعوات ترامب العنصرية الببضاء الموجّهة للداخل الأميركي بحملات غورباتشوف الروسيّة البيضاء الموجّهة لدول الاتحاد السوفياتيّ والساعية للتخلّص منها كأعباء. وكذلك تتشابه معارك ترامب مع التكتلات الاقتصادية التي تستأثر بالاقتصاد الأميركي لحساب أقليّة من المالكين والعاملين فيها، مقابل ذبول القطاعات التي تُشغل غالبية الأميركيين ويتوزّع أصحابها على شريحة ضخمة من أصحاب الرساميل، يمثلهم ترامب، بمعارك غورباتشوف ضد ملكيات الدولة للاقتصادات الضخمة وتهميش الرأسمال الصاعد، وكلاهما يرفع شعار إعادة التوازن لأجنحة الاقتصاد عبر مشروع «بريسترويكا» لإعادة البناء، وخطاب مباشر للشعب أسماه غورباتشوف بـ«الغلاسنوست»، ويترجمه ترامب في تغريداته اليومية عبر تويتر.

– اعتبر غورباتشوف أن سبب اختناق الاتحاد السوفياتي، خصوصاً روسيا ناجم عن الاستثمار اللامجدي على سباق التسلح، كضريبة للزعامة العالمية، وأن ترجيح كفة القطاع الخاص في الاقتصاد سيؤدي لإنعاش الطبقة الوسطى وبنى الإنتاج المجدي. ويعتبر ترامب أن الاختناق الاقتصادي لأميركا ناتج عن الضريبة التي تدفعها ثمناً للزعامة العالمية، سواء عبر نشر قوات هائلة خارج الحدود لحماية حلفاء أغنياء لا يدفعون شيئاً كاليابان وأوروبا والخليج، أو عبر التسهيلات الاقتصادية للحلفاء الفقراء ضمن اتفاقيات ترتّب عليها إضعاف الاقتصاد الأميركي كحال الاتفاقية مع الأرجنتين ودول المحيط الهادئ المعروفة بـ«اتفاق نفتا». ويلتقي الرجلان على الدعوة لتحرير بلديهما من هذه الأعباء طريقاً للانتعاش الاقتصادي، والخروج من الاختناق والركود.

– ترتّب على سياسات غورباتشوف مع إزالة سيطرة الدولة على القطاعات الاقتصادية الكبرى تراجع هائل في الواردات، وضعف في قدرة الدولة على الإنفاق فتراجع السوق وازداد ضموراً، وظهرت قوى اقتصادية جديدة بسرعة حملت اقتصاد السوق وما فيه من فوارق طبقية هائلة في المجتمع، فظهرت روسيا فيها خلال عشر سنوات كدولة من دول العالم الثالث، بعدما تفكّك الاتحاد السوفياتي وسقطت المنظومة الاشتراكية وانهار حلفها العسكري المسمّى بـ«حلف وارصو» وذهبت أغلب دوله لضفة الغرب تحت عنوان الاتحاد الأوروبي أو حلف الأطلسي. والسؤال الذي يواجه ترامب ومشروعه عما إذا كان سيترتب على ربط الانتشار العسكري بتسديد الحلفاء تكاليفه إلى تراجع النفوذ على الحلفاء وبالتالي في العالم، وما إذا كان سيترتب على إضعاف الشركات العملاقة العابرة للقارات لحساب الشركات الأميركية الوطنية الصرفة، والمعتمدة على السوق الأميركية، إلى اضطراب في الوزن النوعي للعملة الأميركية في الأسواق العالمية، وإلى إفلاسات تُصيب بسبب شحّ الموارد الخارجية وعائدات المضاربات، الكثير من المصارف الأميركية، وما إذا كان كل ذلك سيفتح النقاش حول مبرّر التمسك بالدولار عملة دولية إجبارية للتعاملات المصرفية، وبالمصارف الأميركية كعقدة مرور للطرق المالية في العالم. وهذان هما، الدولار والتداول المصرفي، آخر ما تبقى من جدران حماية لزعامة أميركية في العالم تترجمهما سياسة العقوبات التي تلوّح بها أميركا لخصومها كلّهم.

لافت أن تقف الجالية اليهودية في كل من روسيا وأميركا بقوة وراء دعم الرجلين. ولافت حماسهما المفرط لـ«إسرائيل». وقد كانت مصلحة «إسرائيل» من غورباتشوف تنحصر بإخلاء الساحة الدولية لأميركا، بينما مع الهزال «الإسرائيلي» صار يكفي من ترامب أن يقدّم لـ«إسرائيل» حليفاً في أميركا لا يؤمن بأن «إسرائيل» تحتاج لمن ينقذها من نفسها ومن غطرستها، بل يشاركها هذه الغطرسة، حليفاً يطمئن مستوطنيها أنهم يحظون بحليف لا يجادلهم. كما هو لافت كيف كان سقوط الاتحاد السوفياتي بوليصة تأمين لربع قرن أمام «إسرائيل» التي كانت تواجه مع صعود غورباتشوف انتفاضة فلسطينية باسلة عرفت بانتفاضة الحجارة ومقاومة لبنانية نشطة كانت قد حرّرت نصف الأراضي المحتلة، فجاء التفرّد الأميركي في حكم العالم شحنة دفع لتتخطّى «إسرائيل» الكثير من المخاطر والأزمات، بينما يتزامن تخلخل أميركا اليوم مع زمن دخول «إسرائيل» أزمة وجودية قاتلة، ولا يبدو أمامها بوليصة تأمين. ولافت أيضاً أنه في زمن الانكفاء الروسي اندفعت أميركا لتملأ الفراغ، وفي زمن الانكفاء الأميركي تندفع روسيا لتملأ الفراغ. يفعلها التاريخ بقوّة ولكن بقسوة أيضاً… هو التاريخ!

– المفارقة أن غورباتشوف خاض معركة تغيير الاتحاد السوفياتي بلسان النخب المتأنّقة والمثقفة، بوجه من وصفَهم بـ«القبضايات»، ويخوض ترامب حربه بصفته «القبضاي» الذي يقاتل النخب المتحذلقة والمتفذلكة، وتكفي لغة ترامب لقول ذلك.

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How the Trump Regime was Manufactured by a War Inside the Deep

 

A systemic crisis in the global Deep System has driven the violent radicalization of a Deep State faction

By Nafeez Ahmed

President Donald Trump is not fighting a war on the establishment: he’s fighting a war to protect the establishment from itself, and the rest of us.

At first glance, this isn’t obvious. Among his first actions upon taking office, Trump vetoed the Trans Pacific Partnership, the controversial free trade agreement which critics rightly said would lead to US job losses while giving transnational corporations massive power over national state policies on health, education and other issues.

Trump further plans to ditch the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) between the EU and US, which would have diluted key state regulations on the activities of transnational corporates on issues like food safety, the environment and banking; and to renegotiate NAFTA, potentially heightening tensions with Canada.

Trump appears to be in conflict with the bulk of the US intelligence community, and is actively seeking to restructure the government to minimize checks and balances, and thus consolidate his executive power.

His chief strategist, Steve Bannon, has completely restructured the National Security Council under unilateral presidential authority. While Bannon and his Chief of Staff Richard ‘Reince’ Priebus now have permanent seats on the NSC’s Principals’ Committee, the Director of National Intelligence and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff are barred from meetings except when requested for their expertise. The Secretary of Energy and US ambassador to the UN have been expelled entirely.

Trump’s White House has purged almost the entire senior staff of the State Department, and tested the loyalty of the Department of Homeland Security with its new ‘Muslim ban’ order.

So what is going on? One approach to framing the Trump movement comes from Jordan Greenhall, who sees it as a conservative (“Red Religion”) Insurgency against the liberal (“Blue Church”) Globalist establishment (the “Deep State”). Greenhall suggests, essentially, that Trump is leading a nationalist coup against corporate neoliberal globalization using new tactics of “collective intelligence” by which to outsmart and outspeed his liberal establishment opponents.

But at best this is an extremely partial picture.

In reality, Trump has ushered in something far more dangerous:

The Trump regime is not operating outside the Deep State, but mobilizing elements within it to dominate and strengthen it for a new mission.

The Trump regime is not acting to overturn the establishment, but to consolidate it against a perceived crisis of a wider transnational Deep System.

The Trump regime is not a conservative insurgency against the liberal establishment, but an act of ideologically constructing the current crisis as a conservative-liberal battleground, led by a particularly radicalized white nationalist faction of a global elite.

The act is a direct product of a global systemic crisis, but is a short-sighted and ill-conceived reaction, pre-occupied with surface symptoms of that crisis. Unfortunately, those hoping to resist the Trump reaction also fail to understand the system dynamics of the crisis.

All this can only be understood when we look at the big picture. That means the following: we must look a little more closely at the individuals inside Trump’s administration, the wider social and institutional networks they represent, and what emerges from their being interlocked in government; we must contextualize this against two factors, the escalation of global systemic crisis, and the Trump regime’s ideological framing(s) of that crisis (both for themselves, and for public consumption); we must connect this with the impact on the transnational Deep System, and how that links up with the US Deep State; and we must then explore what this all means in terms of the scope of actions likely to be deployed by the Trump regime to pursue its discernable goals.

This investigation will help to establish a ground state for anyone on which to build a meaningful strategy of response that accounts for the full systemic complexity of our Trumpian moment.

So the first step to diagnosing our Trumpian moment is to see who is leading it. We’ll begin by looking at a cross-section of some of Trump’s most prominent nominations and appointments.

1. The Trump regime

Money Monsters

If all Trump’s appointees are confirmed, his administration will be among the most business-heavy, corporate-friendly governments in American history.

Five of the 15 people nominated by Trump as Cabinet secretaries have no public sector experience, and have spent their entire careers in the corporate sector. “That would be more business people with no public-sector experience than have ever served in the Cabinet at any one time,”, concludes Pew Research Center.

Betsy DeVos has been nominated for Education Secretary. She’s a billionaire married to the Amway conglomerate.

Andrew Puzder has been nominated as Labor Secretary. He’s a billionaire CEO of fastfood chain owner CKE Restaurants.

Trump’s nominee for Commerce Secretary is Wall Street veteran Wilbur Ross. He’s a billionaire financier who invests in buying and selling companies in distressed industries, and who made his early fortune as a fund manager at the Rothschild Group.

Steven Mnuchin, Trump’s Treasury Secretary, is a former partner at the global investment bank Goldman Sachs, a hedge fund manager and, until his nomination, a board member of the Fortune 500 financial holding company, CIT Group. He’s also a member of the Yale University secret society, Skull and Bones.

Vincent Viola is Trump’s nominee for Army Secretary. He’s a billionaire, former chairman of the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX), and current chairman of Virtu Financial, a high-frequency trading firm.

Linda McMahon is Trump’s Small Business Administrator. She’s a co-founder and former CEO of WWE, which is now valued at around $1.5 billion, and married to billionaire WWE promoter Vincent McMahon.

Gary Cohn is Trump’s chief economic advisor and Director of the White House National Economic Council. He just left his previous post as president and chief operating officer at Goldman Sachs for the job.

Anthony Scaramucci has served as a senior advisor to Trump on the executive committee of the Presidential Transition Team. Previously he was founding co-managing partner of global investment firm SkyBridge Capital. Like Steve Bannon, he also began his career at Goldman Sachs.

Walter ‘Jay’ Clayton is Trump’s nominee for the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC), the financial industry’s top regulatory watchdog. Yet Clayton himself is a Wall Street lawyer who has worked on deals for major banks, such as Barclays Capital’s acquisition of Lehman Brothers’ assets, the sale of Bear Stearns to JP Morgan Chase, and the US Treasury’s capital investment in Goldman Sachs. In the same capacity, he has campaigned to reduce restrictions on foreign public companies, and sought lax enforcement of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. His wife, Gretchen Butler, works for Goldman Sachs as a private wealth advisor.

Trump’s crack team of money monsters is clearly not planning on acting in the interests of American workers — they will instead do what they know best: use the considerable power of the American state to break down as many regulatory constraints on global banking finance as possible, with a special view to privilege US banks and corporations.

Fossil Fuel Freaks

Trump’s administration has not just been bought by Wall Street. It’s been bought by the oil, gas and coal industries.

Rex Tillerson is Trump’s Secretary of State, and former chairman and CEO of giant oil and gas conglomerate ExxonMobil. As the world’s largest oil major of all, ExxonMobil is the de facto king of fossil fuel interests. Tillerson has close business ties with Russian president Vladimir Putin, and has previously headed up the joint US-Russian oil company Exxon Neftegas.

Tillerson is a friend of Igor Sechin, who heads up the military security services faction of the Kremlin known as ‘Siloviki’. ExxonMobil also had intimate ties with Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates under Tillerson. In any case, Trump has richly rewarded Tillerson for services rendered — 91% of the $1.8 million donated to federal candidates by ExxonMobil’s PAC under Tillerson for this election cycle, went to Republicans.

It’s well-known that ExxonMobil has funded climate denialism to the tune of tens of millions of dollars. What’s less well-known is that in the 1970s, ExxonMobil’s own scientific research fully validated the scientific reality of climate change. Yet company executives made a self-serving business-decision to suppress these findings, and fund efforts to discredit climate science.

Rick Perry, the former governor of Texas, is Trump’s Secretary of Energy. Perry holds board directorships at Energy Transfer Partners LP and Sunoco Logistics Partners LP, which jointly developed the Dakota Access Pipeline project. The CEO of Energy Transfer Partners, Kelcy Warren, donated $5 million to a super-PAC supportive of Perry. More generally, his two presidential campaigns received over $2.6 million from the oil and gas industry.

Scott Pruitt, former Attorney General in Oklahoma, is the new head of the Environment Protection Agency. Pruitt has a track record of launching federal lawsuits to weaken and overturn EPA regulations not just on carbon emissions, but on all sorts of basic environmental rules on air and water pollution. The New York Times reports that he and other Republican attorney generals have forged an “unprecedented, secretive alliance” with the oil industry.

Congressman Ryan Zinke is Trump’s nominee for Secretary of the Interior. During Senate confirmation hearings, he refused to admit the accuracy of the scientific consensus on human activity being the dominant cause of climate change. Zinke has supported clean energy measures in the past, but in May 2016, he sponsored a bill for a time limit on Obama’s moratorium on federal coal leasing. He routinely voted against environmental protection measures, supporting fossil fuel use, seeking to minimize public and state involvement in managing public lands, while opposing protections for endangered species.

Zinke’s philosophy is basically ‘drill, baby, drill’. That’s why he’s taken over $300,000 in campaign donations from oil and gas companies that want to accelerate drilling across public lands.

Mike Catanzaro is Trump’s nominee for Special Assistant for Energy and the Environment. He is also a climate-denying lobbyist for the oil and gas industry, working for Koch Industries, America’s Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA), Halliburton, Noble Energy, Hess Corporation, and many others. Early on in his career, he was Deputy Policy Director of the 2004 Bush-Cheney presidential campaign.

The fossil fuel freaks want to burn all the oil, gas and coal they can, at any cost — and they are willing to dismantle whatever environmental protections stand in their way.

Black Ops Brigade

It would be mistaken to assume that Trump’s conflicts with the US intelligence community mean he is necessarily at odds with the military-industrial complex. On the contrary, his defense appointees and advisors are embedded across the military-industrial complex. Trump’s education secretary, DeVos, is the sister of Erik Prince, the notorious founder of disgraced private security firm Blackwater, now known as Academi, which was outed for slaughtering 17 Iraqi civilians.

A source in Trump’s transition team confirms that Erik Prince has advised Trump’s team on intelligence and security issues. Prince now runs another security firm, Frontier Services Group. He supports Trump’s proposal for the US military to grab Iraq’s oil and recommends the escalated deployment of private defense contractors across the Middle East and North Africa, such as in Libya, to crackdown on refugees.

General ‘Mad Dog’ James Mattis is Trump’s Secretary of Defense. He was also, until his resignation due to his political appointment, on the board of directors of General Dynamics, the fifth largest private defense contractor in the world. Mattis is also on the board of Theranos, a biotechnology company known for its questionable automated fingerstick blood test technology.

Lieutenant-General Mike Flynn is Trump’s National Security Advisor. He is a former head of the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) under Obama, and a longstanding military intelligence and special operations insider. Previously, he was director of intelligence for the Joint Special Operations Command; director of intelligence for the US Central Command; commander of the Joint Functional Component Command for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance; chair of the Military Intelligence Board; and Assistant Director of National Intelligence. Flynn also runs Flynn Intel Group, a private intelligence consulting firm.

Flynn has just co-authored a book with Michael Ledeen, The Field of Fight: How We Can Win the Global War Against Radical Islam and its Allies. Ledeen is a leading neoconservative defense consultant and former Reagan administration appointee who was involved in the Iran–Contra affair as a consultant of then US National Security Advisor, Robert McFarlane. Currently a Freedom Scholar at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD), he was a staunch advocate of the 2003 invasion of Iraq (he was directly involved with the Yellowcake forgeries attempting to fabricate a weapons of mass destruction threat to justify the war) and has campaigned for military interventions in Syria, Iran and beyond. Ledeen’s aggressive foreign policy vision was deeply influential in the formation of the Bush administration’s foreign policy strategy.

It’s worth noting how low Ledeen stoops with his political philosophy. In his 2000 book, Tocqueville on American Character, Ledeen argues that in some situations, “[i]n order to achieve the most noble accomplishments, the leader may have to ‘enter into evil.’” (p. 90) He even argues that this is sanctioned by the Christian God: “Since it is the highest good, the defense of the country is one of those extreme situations in which a leader is justified in committing evil.” (p. 117)

That sort of thinking has led him to endorse the ‘cauldronization’ of the Middle East. In 2002, he wrotein support of invading Iraq that: “One can only hope that we turn the region into a cauldron, and faster, please. If ever there were a region that richly deserved being cauldronized, it is the Middle East today.”

General John F. Kelly is Trump’s Secretary of Homeland Security. He is a retired United States Marine Corps general who previously served under Obama as commander of the US Southern Command, responsible for American military operations in Central America, South America and the Caribbean. Before that Kelly was the commanding general of the Multi-National Force-West in Iraq, and the commander of Marine Forces Reserve and Marine Forces North. Kelly is also a vice chairman at the Spectrum Group, a defense contractor lobbying firm; and on the board of directors of two other private Pentagon contractors, Michael Baker International and Sallyport Global.

James Woolsey, the former CIA director and neoconservative stalwart — a former Vice President at NSA-contractor Booz Allen Hamilton and among Michael Ledeen’s bosses at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies — was an early Trump supporter, and a senior advisor to Trump on his transition team. He dropped out over reservations with Trump’s plans to restructure the intelligence community.

Lieutenant General Joseph Keith Kellogg is Chief of Staff and Executive Secretary of Trump’s White House National Security Council. the US military’s top information technology official during the Bush administration’s invasion of Iraq in 2003.

He went on to become chief operating officer for the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad, the mechanism for the US occupation of Iraq, from November 2003 to March 2004 — the period widely recognized as being particularly corrupt and inept.

In between, Kellogg had joined the board of directors of US government IT contractor, GTSI Corp, where he returned as an independent director after his Iraq stint from 2004 until 2013 — when the firm changed its name to ‘UNICOM Government Inc.’ in an attempt to distance itself from earlier revelations of misconduct.

Kellogg later joined the Advisory Board of US defense contractor Raytheon’s Trusted Computer Solutions Inc., and the Strategic Advisory Board of RedXDefence, a US military contractor part-owned by Regina Dugan, former director of the Pentagon’s Defense and Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

In 2012, Wired magazine outed RedXDefense for creating completely rubbish bomb detection technology under a multi-million dollar DARPA contract during Dugan’s tenure. Despite its flaws, the tech was purchased widely by the US military, and numerous allied militaries around the world.

Mike Pompeo is the icing on the cake. As Trump’s CIA director, this Republican Congressman has no obvious experience relevant to running a national intelligence agency, except perhaps for one thing: as Jane Mayer writes in her book Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right (Doubleday 2015), Pompeo is “so closely entwined with the climate-change denying Koch brothers that he was known as the ‘congressman from Koch.’”

The Koch brothers, who made their fortune investing in fossil fuels, now have a direct line to America’s premiere national intelligence agency. Now that’s what you call a coup.

Ku Klux Klan

Virulent white nationalism is another fundamental defining feature of the Trump regime.

Steve Bannon was founding executive chair of Breitbart News, “the platform of the alt-right” according to Bannon himself. Breitbart is widely known for its publication of “racist, sexist, xenophobic and anti-Semitic material.” Bannon himself is also a prolific film producer, and has made or contributed to a range of xenophobic films.

Before his rise to media mogul status, though, Bannon spent a brief time as acting director of the Biosphere 2 experiment, an effort to create a self-sufficient ‘closed system’ environment survivable by a small group of people from 1993 to 1995. At the time, Bannon appeared to share and strongly supportthe concerns of the Biosphere 2 scientists about the danger of climate change driven by, in his own words, “the effect of greenhouse gases on humans, plants and animals.” He later underwent an Exxon-like about-turn, illustrated by Breitbart’s rampant opposition to the idea that the burning of fossil fuels by human civilization is intensifying climate change.

In 2007, Bannon produced a proposal for a new documentary, ‘Destroying the Great Satan: The Rise of Islamic Facism [sic] in America’, which accused various media outlets, “Universities and the Left”, the “American Jewish Community”, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the CIA, the FBI, the State Department, and the White House as being “enablers” of a covert mission to establish an “Islamic Republic in the United States.”

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Bannon consulted on the proposal with Steven Emerson of the Investigative Project on Terrorism. In 2015, Emerson was described as a “complete idiot” by then Prime Minister David Cameron for claiming falsely on Fox News that Britain is full of Muslim “no go zones” (like the entire city of Birmingham), and that London is run amok by Muslim religious police who beat and wound people who refuse to dress according to a Muslim dress code.

Bannon’s list of interviewees for the proposed film is like a Who’s Who of far-right bigotry. Two of the most well known names included Walid Phares, who advised Trump on his national security team during the presidential campaign, and Robert Spencer. Both are connected to the Washington DC-based Center for Security Policy (CSP), a far-right think tank run by former Reagan defense official Frank Gaffney, where they appear regularly as guests on CSP’s ‘Secure Freedom’ radio podcast run by Gaffney. Phares is also a senior fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracy.

Frank Gaffney’s CSP commissioned the original flawed opinion poll that was cited by Trump to justify his ‘Muslim ban’ when he first announced it in late 2015. So it’s clearly no coincidence that Kellyanne Conway, the pollster who carried out the flawed poll, is now Counselor to the President.

Gaffney thus has a significant degree of ideological influence on the Trump regime. He has appeared at least 34 times on Bannon’s Breitbart radio program. His work has also been cited in speeches by Michael Flynn, Trump’s national security advisor.

Alarmingly, Gaffney has disturbing connections to full-blown neo-Nazi groups across Europe, such as the Danish People’s Party (DPP) and the Vlaams Belang (VB) in Belgium.

But he simultaneously has close ties to the US military-industrial complex. In 2013, CSP tax records showed that the CSP had received funding from six of America’s biggest aerospace and defense contractors, namely Boeing ($25,000); General Dynamics ($15,000); Lockheed Martin ($15,000); Northrup Grumman ($5,000); Raytheon ($20,000); and General Electric ($5,000). The CSP has a particularly close relationship with Boeing, the second largest defense contractor in the world, which still provides Gaffney’s group with “general support.”

Michael Reilly, who has been Director of Federal Budget and Program Analysis at Boeing since 2010, was previously Gaffney’s Vice President for Operations at the CSP.

These incestuous ties with the US private defense sector comprise one prime reason that fully 22 officers or advisors of Gaffney’s CSP ended up having appointments in the George W. Bush administration.

Senator Jeff Sessions is Trump’s Attorney General. Gaffney’s CSP awarded Sessions the annual ‘Keeper of the Flame’ award in 2015. Sessions has previously expressed sympathies for the Ku Klux Klan. He has closely associated with far-right anti-immigrant organizations founded by John Tanton, a driving force in America’s white nationalist movements. In 1993, Tanton declared: “… for European-American society and culture to persist requires a European-American majority, and a clear one at that.” Yet Trump’s new Attorney General is known for frequently quoting from Tanton’s groups, showing up at their press conferences, and has even received recognition and campaign contributions from them.

The John Tanton connection opens up a can of worms. Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s Counsellor, is also connected to Tanton. Her polling firm was previously contracted by Tanton’s anti-immigration platform Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR).

Numerous other officials involved in the Trump team — Lou Barletta, Kris Kobach and Julie Kirchner — have direct organizational ties to Tanton’s FAIR.

But this connects senior Trump officials to a grim history of neo-Nazi agitation in the US. Tanton received large sums of early money for FAIR from the Pioneer Fund, a pro-Nazi grant-giving organization which funded eugenics — the discredited ‘science’ of ‘racial hygiene’. Tanton’s various anti-immigrant platforms received money from the Pioneer Fund as late as 2002. According to a study in the Albany Law Review, the Pioneer Fund had direct ties to Nazi scientists, and its founding directors were Nazi sympathizers. One of them had even travelled to Germany in 1935 to attend a Nazi population conference.

Stephen Miller is a senior policy advisor to Trump. He previously worked as communications director for Jeff Sessions in his senator’s office, and crafted the strategy to defeat a bipartisan immigration reform bill in 2013. During his university days, he worked closely with the neo-Nazi leader Richard Spencer, who coined the term “alternative Right” as a new way of capturing a movement about white racial identity.

Miller denies having worked closely with Spencer when they were at university together as members of the Duke Conservative Union. According to Spencer, Miller helped him with fundraising and promotion for an on-campus debate on immigration policy in 2007. The event featured Peter Brimelow, who runs the white nationalist website Vdare.com, which regularly publishes articles by neo-Nazis. Miller’s relationship with Spencer at this time has been confirmed by email correspondence between Spencer and Brimelow.

It’s perhaps worth noting that the inspiration for Tanton’s neo-Nazi sympathies were, ostensibly, environmental concerns. In a recent article he admits, “my initial interest in curtailing immigration was motivated by a longstanding concern for the environment.”

From 1971 to 1975, Tanton was chair of the National Population Committee of one of America’s oldest environmental organizations, the Sierra Club. His theory was that immigration drives unsustainable population growth, which then drains resources and harms the environment. The environmental crisis, from Tanton’s point of view, is a population problem — specifically, a problem of too many people. Part of dealing with that means cracking down on immigration — this, ironically, in a nation founded on immigration.

This insidious proto-Nazi ideology now appears to have an operating influence on the White House through Tanton’s ideological surrogates, many of whom are connected to Gaffney and his acolytes in the Trump regime.

Guru Gang

The unifying ideology that lends coherence to these intersecting networks of influence comes from a variety of people, but the following stand out in particular.

Michael Anton is a little-known but powerful figure in the Trump administration, now a senior director of strategic communications in the White House National Security Council. He launched his career as a speechwriter and press secretary for New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, before joining Bush’s White House in 2001 as a communications aide for the National Security Council. He went on to become a speechwriter for media mogul Rupert Murdoch at News Corp, then moved into the financial sector, firstly as director of communications for Citigroup, then as a managing director at the BlackRock investment firm.

Anton has played a major role in attempting to cajole and convince conservatives, through various anonymous writings in conservative publications and behind-the-scenes networking, of the necessity of voting Trump to head off the crisis of conservative decline amidst the apocalyptic failures of liberalism.

Rupert Murdoch has a direct line to the Trump White House through Michael Anton, but it’s one the News Corp owner has gone to pains to build personally. Murdoch and his wife Jerry Hall were hosted for dinner by Trump at his golf course in Scotland in June 2016. Later Murdoch was seen visiting Trump Tower in November 2016. Murdoch is set to have significant influence on Trump, who reportedly asked the Fox News owner to recommend his top preferred candidates to chair the Federal Communications Commission.

The Murdoch connection has other alarming ramifications. Since 2010, Murdoch has been an equity-holding board member of the American energy firm, Genie Oil & Gas. He had teamed up with Lord Jacob Rothschild, chairman of Rothschild Investment Trust (RIT) Capital Partners, to buy a 5.5% stake in the corporation then worth $11 million.

Murdoch and Rothschild also serve on Genie’s strategic advisory board. Joining them on the board are Larry Summers, former Director of President Obama’s National Economic Council; former Trump senior advisor James Woolsey; Dick Cheney, former Vice-President under George W. Bush; and Bill Richardson, former Secretary of Energy under Clinton and Governor of New Mexico.

Genie Oil & Gas has two main subsidiaries. One of them, Afek Oil & Gas, operates in Israel and is currently drilling in the Golan Heights, which under international law is recognized as Syrian territory. The Golan was captured by Israel from Syria in 1967, and unilaterally annexed in 1981 with the introduction of Israeli law to the territory. The other Genie subsidiary, American Shale Oil, is a joint project with the French major Total SA, and operates in Colorado’s Green River Formation.

On its website, the company offers an extraordinary declaration regarding its rationale for focusing on unconventional oil and gas resources:

“The peaking of world oil production presents the US and the world with an enormous challenge. Aggressive action must be taken to avoid unprecedented economic, social and political costs.”This may well reveal much about the crisis-perceptions of those who influence the Trump regime.

Trump’s administration has been further augmented by a man with especially extensive ties to the US Deep State: Henry Kissinger.

Since December 2016, Kissinger, the notorious former Secretary of State convincingly accused of complicity in war crimes by the late Christopher Hitchens — who has played direct advisory roles in both the preceding Bush and Obama administrations — has become Trump’s unofficial foreign policy guru. Kissinger was a secret national security consultant to President Bush, and under Obama wasdirectly involved in the US National Security Council’s chain-of-command.

He now appears to be intimately involved in the evolution of Trump’s foreign policies toward China and Russia. His firm, Kissinger Associates, has for some years played a central role in easing the passage of numerous US corporations into lucrative Chinese investments.

Trump’s peculiar brand of haphazard, unscripted and chaotic political announcements may well have endeared him to Kissinger, who has argued that “unpredictability” is a hallmark of the greatest statesmen. Such leaders act beyond the sort of “pre-vision of catastrophes” offered by established experts recommending caution, instead indulging in “perpetual creation, on a constant redefinition of goals.” The greatest statesmen are able to both “maintain the perfection of order” and “to have the strength to contemplate chaos”, where they can “find material for fresh creation.”

Kissinger’s critical role in developing Trump’s eastward facing strategy was revealed by the German tabloid, Der Bild, which obtained a document from the Trump transition team. The document confirmed Kissinger’s role as the key mastermind brought in to craft a way to rebuild relationships with Russia. Kissinger’s plan would include lifting US economic sanctions — paving the way for a potentially lucrative partnership between American and Russian oil and gas companies — and recognizing Russia’s ownership of the Crimea.

Kissinger’s advice on China policy, however, is not yet fully known. Writing in the South China Morning Post, Pepe Escobar argues that Kissinger’s record suggests Trump will deploy “a mix of ‘balance of power’ and ‘divide and rule’. It will consist of seducing Russia away from its strategic partner China; keeping China constantly on a sort of red alert; and targeting Islamic State while continuing to harass Iran.”

Kissinger’s ‘unofficial’ advisory role in the Trump regime is solidified through the direct influence of one of his longtime acolytes.

K.T. McFarland, who is to work under Michael Flynn as Trump’s Deputy National Security Adviser, was an aide to Henry Kissinger during the Nixon administration on the National Security Council from 1970 to 1976. In that capacity, she played a lead role in working on Kissinger’s notorious and originally classified 1974 National Security Study Memorandum 200 (NSSM200). The document advocated that population growth in poorer countries was the principal threat to US overseas security and other interests, especially by endangering US access to “mineral supplies”.

Making America hate again

It appears that there are common themes among the different groupings that comprise the Trump regime. Among them are experiences and recognition of crisis: Rex Tillerson and Steve Bannon, for instance, come from backgrounds acknowledging the reality of the planetary ecological crisis.

Energy interests linked to Murdoch believe in an imminent social, economic and political crisis due to peak oil.

Most Trump teamsters see their task as saving the fossil fuel industries from crises external to them, and now all ostensibly tend to deny the gravity of the industry’s environmental impacts.

All are worried about the profits of their friends in Wall Street.

A large number of Trump team associates have ties to John Tanton, whose proto-Nazi views are rooted in an eugenics-inspired belief that the environmental crisis is due to too many non-white people.

And now Trump’s national security team draws on the parallel views of the old Nixon era Kissinger team concerning the threat of overpopulated poor countries undermining US access to the world’s food, energy and raw materials resources — for which the solution could be to ‘cauldronize’ countries of strategic interest.

These crisis-perceptions, however, are not grounded in systemic insight: but are refracted through the narrow lenses of self-serving power. The crises are relevant only insofar that they represent a threat to their interests. But most importantly, their ensuing beliefs about how to respond to these crises end up being refracted through the ideological framework of the conservative-liberal polarity.

2. The Deep System

Perhaps the most powerful takeaway from this examination of who the Trump administration actually is, is that the Trump regime is not external to the Deep State. On the contrary, the people who hold senior posts in his administration, both formal and otherwise, are key nodes that represent whole layers of social and institutional networks within and across the wider US Deep State.

If this is not immediately obvious, it’s because there is much misunderstanding of what the Deep State actually is. The Deep State is not simply ‘the intelligence community’. When a more accurate understanding of the American Deep State and its symbiotic embeddedness in a transnational Deep System is adopted, the role of the Trump faction can be properly discerned.

Secret state, opaque system

In his book, Deep Politics and the Death of JFK (University of California Press, 1996), Professor Peter Dale Scott coined the term deep politics to designate the study of criminal and extra-legal practices linked to the state. He defined a deep political system or process as one in which institutional and non-institutional bodies, criminal syndicates, politicians, judges, media, corporations and leading government employees, resort to “decision-making and enforcement procedures outside as well as inside those sanctioned by law and society. What makes these supplementary procedures ‘deep’ is the fact that they are covert or suppressed, outside public awareness as well as outside sanctioned political processes.”

Deep political analysis is therefore concerned with revealing the tendency of the state to enter into activity outside of the state’s own rule of law. From the viewpoint of conventional political science, law enforcement and the criminal underworld are opposed to each other, the former struggling to gain control of the latter. But as Scott observes:

“A deep political analysis notes that in practice these efforts at control lead to the use of criminal informants; and this practice, continued over a long period of time, turns informants into double agents with status within the police as well as the mob. The protection of informants and their crimes encourages favours, payoffs, and eventually systemic corruption. The phenomenon of ‘organized crime’ arises: entire criminal structures that come to be tolerated by the police because of their usefulness in informing on lesser criminals.”This can lead to a form of state-crime symbiosis, blurring the defining parameters of which side controls the other. From the outside, this appears as the emergence of an invisible “deep” dimension to state activities tying it to organized crime, when in reality what is happening is that the state is inherently porous: its “deep” invisible side connects it to all manner of private, extra-legal actors who often seek to operate outside or in breach of the law — or to influence or bend the law to serve their interests.

In his more recent opus, The American Deep State, (p. 14) Scott also acknowledges in this vein that the deep state “is not a structure but a system, as difficult to define, but also as real and powerful, as a weather system.”

As I’ve shown in my paper published in the anthology, The Dual State (Routledge, 2016), one of the least understood features of deep politics, then, is that the “deep state” must inherently be inter-networked with a vast array of non-state and often transnational influencers across corporations, financial institutions, banks, and criminal enterprises.

Capitalism, Covert Action and State-Terrorism: Towards a Political Economy of the Deep State
In the name of fighting the post-9/11 “War on Terror” Western states have with increasing impunity bent, stretched and…www.academia.edu

The postwar global deep system

America’s historic role as the principal shaper of global capitalism means that the globalization of capitalism enabled the emergence and expansion of a US-dominated transnational Deep System — within this global Deep System, a US-dominated transnational financial elite has become inherently entangled with criminal networks.

The expansion of global capitalism since 1945 was not an automated process. On the contrary, it was a deeply violent process led principally by the United States, Britain and Western Europe. Throughout, theCIA and Wall Street acted largely hand-in-hand. Globalization was tied directly to military interventions in over 70 developing nations designed to create the political conditions conducive to markets that would be ‘open’ to western capital penetration, and thus domination of local resources and labour. The logic of ‘deep politics’ required that much of this criminal political violence in foreign theatres be suppressed from public consciousness, or otherwise justified in different ways.

This was privately acknowledged by US State Department planners working in partnership at the time with the Council on Foreign Relations:

“If war aims are stated, which seem to be concerned solely with Anglo-American imperialism, they will offer little to people in the rest of the world… Such aims would also strengthen the most reactionary elements in the United States and the British Empire. The interests of other peoples should be stressed, not only those of Europe, but also of Asia, Africa and Latin America. This would have a better propaganda effect.”The number of people that died in the course of this forcible integration of former colonies across Asia, Africa, South America and the Middle East into the orbit of an emerging US-UK dominated global economy, is astonishing.

In his book, Unpeople (2004), British historian Mark Curtis offers a detailed breakdown of the death toll at approximately 10 million — a conservative under-estimate, he qualifies. American economist Dr JW Smith, in his Economic Democracy (2005), argues that globalization was:

“… responsible for violently killing 12 to 15 million people since WW II and causing the death of hundreds of millions more as their economies were destroyed or those countries were denied the right to restructure to care for their people… that is the record of the Western imperial centers of capital from 1945 to 1990.”On the back of this deep, transnational political violence — which remains obscured in mainstream media and history education — the US and UK erected a global financial architecture to serve the interests of their most powerful corporate and banking institutions, which hold overwhelming sway over the political class.

State power was deployed to integrate the resources, raw materials, fossil fuel energy reserves, and cheap labour from these vast areas of the world into a global economy dominated by transnational elite interests based largely in the US, UK and Western Europe.

This, too, opened the way for new forms of criminalization of state power. This can be illustrated with a powerful example from terrorism finance expert Loretta Napoleoni, who chaired the Club de Madrid’s terrorism financing group.

She reports that financial deregulation pursued by successive US governments paved the way for different armed and terror groups to link up with each other and with organized crime, generating an overall criminal economy valued at about $1.5 trillion. This criminal economy consists of “illegal capital flights, profits from criminal enterprises, drug trading, smuggling, legal businesses, and so on”, most of which is recycled into Western economies through money laundering via mainstream financial institutions: “It is a vital element of the cash flow of these economies.”

But the problem goes further. As the primary medium of exchange for this criminal economy is the US dollar, the latter’s role as the world reserve currency has cemented a structural situation in which the economic power of the US Treasury has become conditional on the economic immunity of transnational criminal networks, who systematically use US dollars for criminal transactions: The greater the stock of dollars held abroad, the greater the source of revenue for the US Treasury.

These examples illustrate how the US Deep State operates as the chief regulator of a global Deep System, in which seemingly legitimate international financial flows have become increasingly enmeshed with transnational organized crime, powerful corporate interests who control the world’s fossil fuel and raw materials resources, and the privatization of the military-industrial complex.

The Deep State faction behind Trump

Trump fits into this system snugly. Among his draft executive orders is one that would open the door for US corporations to engage in secretive corrupt and criminal practices to buy conflict minerals from the Congo — which are widely used in electronic products like smartphones and laptops.

From this broader perspective, it’s clear that far from representing a force opposed to the Deep State, the Trump regime represents an interlocking network of powerful players across sectors which heavily intersect with the Deep State: finance, energy, military intelligence, private defense, white nationalist ‘alt-right’ media, and Deep State policy intellectuals.

According to Scott, this reflects a deepening “old division within Big Money — roughly speaking, between those Trilateral Commission progressives, many flourishing from the new technologies of the global Internet, who wish the state to do more than at present about problems like wealth disparity, racial injustice and global warming, and those Heritage Foundation conservatives, many from finance and oil, who want it to do even less.”

So rather than being a nationalist ‘insurgency’ against the corporate globalist ‘Deep State’, the Trump regime represents a white nationalist coup by a disgruntled cross-section within the Deep State itself. Rather than coming into conflict with the Deep State, we are seeing a powerful military-corporate nexus within the American Deep State come to the fore. Trump, in this context, is a tool to re-organize and restructure the Deep State in reaction to what this faction believe to be an escalating crisis in the global Deep System.

In short, the Deep State faction backing Trump is embarking on what it believes is a unique and special mission: to save the Deep State from a decline caused by the failures of successive American administrations.

However, what they are actually doing is accelerating the decline of the American Deep State and the disruption of the global Deep System.

3. Systemic Crisis

The Trump faction is correct that there is a crisis in US power, but they fail to grasp the true nature of the crisis in its global systemic context.

Each grouping within the Trump faction, and the elite social and institutional networks they represent, has its own narrow understanding of the crisis, framed from within the ideological parameters of its own special interests and class position.

Each grouping suffers serious epistemological limitations which mean they are not only incapable of grasping the systemic nature of the crisis and its impacts, but they hold self-serving views about the crisis which tend to project their insecurities onto all sorts of Others.

The growth problem

For instance, the ongoing failure to lift the US economy into a meaningful recovery is framed by the Trump faction as due to not putting ‘America first’ in trade relations. Trump’s plan is to boost infrastructure investment to create jobs at home, and to adopt more protectionist trade policies to protect American industries and manufacturing.

The immediate reality here is that Trump’s money monsters are keenly aware that conventional neoliberal American economic and financial policies are no longer working: Under Obama, for instance, the median household income saw its first significant increase since the 2007–8 recession in 2015, rising by 5.2%. In real terms, though, little has changed. Median household income is at $56,516 a year, whichwhen adjusted for inflation, is 2.4% less than what it was at the turn of the millennium.

So while Obama managed to create over a million new jobs, purchasing power for the working and middle classes hasn’t increased — it’s actually decreased. Meanwhile, although the poverty rate dropped by 1.2% in 2015, the overall trend since the 2007 crash has seen the number of poor Americans increase from 38 million to 43.1 million people.

But this problem goes beyond Obama — it’s systemic.

Over the last century, the net value of the energy we are able to extract from our fossil fuel resource base has inexorably declined. The scientific concept used to measure this value is Energy Return on Investment (EROI), a calculation that compares the quantity of energy one extracts from a resource, to the quantity of energy used to enable the extraction.

There was a time in the US, around the 1930s, when the EROI of oil was a monumental 100. This has steadily decreased, with some fluctuation. By 1970, oil’s EROI had dropped to 30. Over the last three decades alone, the EROI of US oil has continued to plummet by more than half, reaching around 10 or 11.

According to environmental scientist professor Charles Hall of the State University of New York, who created the EROI measure, global net energy decline is the most fundamental cause of global economic malaise. Because we need energy to produce and consume, we need more energy to increase production and consumption, driving economic growth. But if we’re getting less energy over time, then we simply cannot increase economic growth.

And this is why there has been an unmistakeable correlation between long-term global net energy decline, and a long-term decline in the rate of global economic growth. There is also an unmistakeable correlation between that long-term decline, the rise in global inequality, and the increase in global poverty.

The self-styled liberal faction of the Deep State has convinced itself that capitalist growth helped halve global poverty since the 1990s, but there’s reason to question that. That success rate is calculated from the World Bank poverty measure of $1.25 a day, a level of very extreme poverty. But this poverty measure is too low.

While the numbers of people living in extreme poverty has indeed halved, many of those people are still poor, deprived of their basic needs. A more accurate measure of poverty shows that the number of poor worldwide has overall increased.

As the London-based development charity ActionAid showed in a 2013 report, a more realistic poverty measure lies between $5 and $10 a day. World Bank data shows that since 1990, the number of people living under $10 a day has increased by 25 percent, and the number of people living under $5 a day has increased by 10 percent. Today, 4.3 billion people — nearly two-thirds of the global population — live on less than $5 a day.

So really, poverty has worsened in the Age of Progress. And now the unsustainability of this equation is coming home to roost even in the centres of global growth, where wealth is most concentrated.

As of mid-2016, the GDP of Europe has been stagnant for over a decade, and the US has reached a GDP growth rate of 1.1 percent, nearly the same as its population. This means that the US has actually experienced no average increase in “per capita wealth”, according to SUNY’s Charles Hall.

To maintain this semblance of economic growth, we are using ingenious debt mechanisms to finance new economic activity. The expansion of global debt is now higher than 2007 pre-crash levels. We are escalating the risk of another financial crisis in coming years, because the tepid growth we’ve managed to squeeze out of the economy so far is based on borrowing from an energetically and environmentally unsustainable future.

And that growth-by-debt mechanism is also occurring within the oil industry, which has amassed two trillion dollars worth of debt that, in the context of the chronic oil price slump, means the industry is not profitable enough to generate the funds to ever repay its debt.

Exclusionary polarities

Both pro- and anti-Trump factions of the Deep State are in denial of the fact that this escalating crisis is due, fundamentally, to the global net energy decline of the world’s fossil fuel resource base.

In a time of fundamental systemic crisis, the existing bedrock of norms and values a group normally holds onto maybe shaken to the core. This can lead a group to attempt to reconstruct a new set of norms and values — but if the group doesn’t understand the systemic crisis, the new construct, if it diagnoses the crisis incorrectly, can end up blaming the wrong issues, leading to Otherization.

The Trump faction ends up falling-back on the narrow pathways with which they are familiar, and believe that rather than requiring a different path, the problem is that we are not fully committed to pursuing the old path. They insist that the problem is not inherent to the structure of the fossil fuel industry itself, or the debt-infested nature of the parasitical global financial system. The problem is seen simply as insufficient exploitation of America’s fossil fuels; too much regulation of the financial system; constant economic pandering to unAmericans — Muslims, immigrants, Latinos, black people — who are either draining the financial system through crime, drugs and terror, or simply overburdening it with their huge numbers.

While they believe that business-as-usual growth must now be monopolized by ‘America first’ (and particularly by a white nationalist definition of ‘America’), their liberal detractors cling to the belief that business-as-usual will in itself usher in continued growth, with a tad of technocratic tinkering and billionaire philanthropy spreading the gains throughout the world.

Both worldviews suffer from serious ideological fallacies — but it’s the failure of the latter that has helped radicalize the former.

Looking at the writing of Trump’s senior advisor Michael Anton throws significant light on how the crisis has radicalized the Trump faction into a delusional, binary worldview. For Anton, the key culprit is the moral and ideological bankruptcy of the liberal paradigm, which has destroyed the economy and is eroding American values; as well as the failure of the conservative establishment to do anything meaningful about it. Anton pined for a great disruptor to revitalize conservativism on a new footing: in the process tearing down liberals and old conservatives in one fell swoop. And so began his ideological love affair with Donald Trump.

The result is Trump’s vision of himself as a sort of American messiah — but this is, of course, a grand construction. The Trump faction, following Anton’s line of argument, have simply framed all of America’s challenges through the narrow lens in which they see everything: the problem of liberals; and thus all America’s problems can be conveniently Otherized, pinned on the fatal combination of liberal decadence, and conservative bankruptcy.

Thus, Trump’s proposed programme is seen by its proponents as a war on both the liberal and conservative establishments responsible for the crisis. The vision seems simple enough.

Domestically and economically: kickstarting economic growth by ramping up massive investments in America’s remaining fossil fuel resources; using this to generate the revenues to fund the trillion dollar infrastructure plan; while refocusing efforts on revitalising American manufacturing; all of which will create millions of new American jobs.

The foreign affairs extension is to partner with Russia to facilitate US-Russian cooperation on new oil and gas projects in the region; weakening the Russia-China partnership to facilitate American pressure on China to capitulate to US encroachment on untapped oil and gas resources in the South China Sea.

The ‘war on terror’ corollary of the Trump vision is to rollback Iran’s expanding influence in the Middle East, which has greatly increased thanks to the 2003 Iraq War and the destabilization of Syria; thereby reconsolidating the regional geopolitical power of the Gulf states, where the bulk of the world’s remaining oil and gas resources are to be found.

The domestic dimension of that ‘war on terror’ corollary involves cracking down on the increasing numbers of ‘useless eaters’, the hordes of non-white Others, who are seen ultimately as parasites gnawing at America’s financial, cultural and national security. Thus, the walling off of Mexico, the ‘Muslim ban’, the crackdown on immigrants, and the veiled threats to the Black Lives Matter movement that its ‘anti police’ attitude will not be tolerated, all become explicable as the result of what happens when a systemic crisis is not understood for what it is, but simply projected onto those who are affected the most by that very crisis.

In all these areas, the common theme discernible across the Trump regime’s key appointments is to react to crisis-perceptions by attributing the crisis to various populations, both inside and outside the United States — invariably painted as out of control, rapidly growing in numbers, and thereby comprising an inherent threat to the ‘greatness’ of an ‘American’ identity that is increasingly defined in parochial, ethno-nationalist terms.

But that’s obviously not going to work. Instead it will escalate the crisis.

Global net energy decline is not going to go away by drilling harder and faster. The very act of drilling harder and faster will ultimately accelerate net energy decline. The geophysical brake on economic growth will harden, not weaken.

And this means that Trump will be forced to rely on public private partnerships to bring in huge investment loans from the private sector to deliver his infrastructure plan. So whatever domestic low paid, sweatshop-style, factory jobs Trump manages to engineer in the near-term, American taxpayers will be forced to foot the bill for the trillions of dollars in repayment of those private loans. Trump’s plan will thus compound the already crisis-prone debt-levels in the American and global financial system.

Meanwhile, climate change will accelerate, even as international order becomes more unstable while Trump spearheads a more aggressive military posture in the Middle East and South Asia, particularly toward Iraq, Iran and China; and cracks down harder on minorities at home.

For every degree to which Trump upscales aggression, America’s real national security will be downgraded. And like any good despot, Trump’s failures will become food for his own propaganda, to be conveniently blamed on the myriad of Others who, in the small minds of the Trump faction, are preventing America from becoming ‘great again.’

4. The future

As global systemic crisis intensifies, the myriad of networks, forces and factions that comprise the American Deep State are turning on each other: Trump is not the cause, but the symptomatic outcome of this structural rupture within the US establishment. What this means is that defeating Trump in itself is not going to weaken or rollback the forces which his regime has unleashed.

On the other hand, although this trajectory will produce immense upheaval and chaos while it lasts, the social support base for our Trumpian moment is dwindling.

We are witnessing the reactionary death throes of the social forces behind the Trump faction. Exit polls show that only 37% of young people aged 18–29 years old voted Trump.

However, while over 55% voted for Clinton, a large number of young people — approximately one million — who might have usually voted Democrat, simply didn’t come out to vote. That’s because while they may have disliked Trump, they didn’t particularly like Clinton either. One in ten millennial voters went for a third party candidate — though still a modest number, it’s three times higher than the number of third-party votes than in the previous election. At this rate of growth, the millennial shift to third party candidates could become fatal for Democrats.

According to Republican strategist Evan Siegfried, if millennials had turned out to vote in 2016, they could have swung the election away from Trump decisively. This is because the party’s traditional support base consists largely of middle class white people, rural voters and baby boomers.

“They are literally dying out,” said Siegried. “Every four years the white population decreases by two per cent, and the white non-college educated population decreases by four per cent.”

Siegfried thus argues that Trump’s victory was won by trying to ensure that millennials and minorities who were unlikely to vote for him didn’t even come out to vote at all.

But here’s the rub. While Siegfried concedes that the demographics continue to shift in favour of the Democrats in the long-run, Clinton was clearly a deeply uninspiring candidate, compromised utterly by her ties to Wall Street and the Deep State.

Democrats looking at these demographic dynamics in the run up to 2016 fooled themselves into believing that a Clinton victory was inevitable. They were wrong, obviously. And while the demographics prove that the Trump support base in America will shrink, this proves that the millennial future won’t just be sceptical of Republicans, but Democrats too.

Today, the composition of the Trump regime proves that Clinton’s loss was not a loss for the Deep State. On the contrary, the real problem is that the American electoral system reflects a form of regime-rotation within the Deep State itself. The rise of the Trump faction signals that the escalation of global systemic crisis has pushed the usual round of regime-rotation into a tipping point, where one branch of the Deep State is now at war with the other branch.

Both sides of the US Deep State blame each other for the system’s failures, neither wishing to admit their own complicity in driving the systems responsible for those failures.

One side wants to respond to the systemic crisis by accelerating market share of the old paradigm — extending the life of the fossil fuel system and deregulating predatory capital. While most are climate deniers, some even appear to recognize the dangers of environmental crisis and resource scarcity but wish to shore up the US Deep State against the crisis as a nationalist response: Fortress America.

The other side hold a deep faith that technological progress will save the day and permit business-as-usual and endless extraction-premised growth to continue — they believe that digitally-driven technological innovations will allow Wall Street to have its cake and eat it: we can grow the economy, and enrich a tiny number of financiers in the West exponentially, and the dividends will trickle down to the Rest with a bit of technocratic tinkering, selective regulation and generous philanthropy.

Neither side truly understands that they both remain locked into the old, dying industrial neoliberal paradigm. That both the conventional Republican and Democrat strategies have failed. And that if they continue to ignore and overlook the reality of the global systemic crisis and its escalating symptoms, they will both become increasingly disrupted and irrelevant to large sectors of the American population.

In that scenario, politics will become increasingly polarized, not less so. Republicans will seek to shore up their white nationalist support base while Democrats will continue to lose credibility as a genuine critical voice due to their establishment myopia.

In an alternative scenario, agents at different levels in both parties, third parties, and across civil society begin to see our Trumpian moment for what it really is.

They realize that both the conservative and liberal polarities are being disrupted by the global systemic crisis. That the Deep State is being disrupted by the global systemic crisis. And that Trump is merely an effort by a branch of the Deep State to stave off the disruption. And that the failures of the other branch of the Deep State are precisely what enabled and emboldened this eventuality.

In that scenario, the current political tendencies of the millennial generation open the possibility for new paths forward for politics, whether conservative or liberal: to re-build their parties, organizations and paradigms in accordance with the emerging dynamics of a global system in transition to a new phase state: beyond carbon, beyond endless growth, beyond mass consumerism, beyond the banal polarities of left and right, white and black, native and foreign, and in service to people and planet.

Dr. Nafeez Ahmed is an award-winning 15-year investigative journalist and creator of INSURGE intelligence, a crowdfunded public interest investigative journalism project.

A special report published by INSURGE INTELLIGENCE, a crowdfunded investigative journalism project for people and planet. Support us to keep digging where others fear to tread.The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Information Clearing House.

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ترامب وأفول العولمة الأميركية

يناير 25, 2017

صفية سعاده

تقهقر الاقتصاد الأميركي

أحد الأسباب الرئيسة لفوز ترامب في الانتخابات الرئاسية على منافسته هيلاري كلينتون، هو الانهيار الاقتصادي الحاصل في الولايات المتحدة الأميركية. ولطالما كان الاقتصاد هو المحرك الفعلي في ترجيح كفة أصوات الأميركيين، إذ إنهم يعيشون في جزيرة قارة ضخمة، وبالتالي لا يأبهون كثيراً لمجريات السياسة الخارجية.

بعد إخفاق رئاسة بوش الابن في تحقيق انتصارات مدوية في افغانستان والعراق، وتوريط الجنود الأميركيين في هذين البلدين، بدأت ملامح فيتنام جديدة تتكوّن مع ما يعني ذلك من تآكل النفوذ الأميركي في مستنقعات آسيا الوسطى والغربية، وتراكم العجز المالي.

وصل باراك أوباما الى سدة الرئاسة، لأنه وعد الناخبين الأميركيين بأنه سينهي الحروب خارج الأراضي الأميركية، وسيعيد الجنود الأميركيين إلى الوطن. وسرعان ما واجهته أزمة سيولة مالية كادت تطيح بالمصارف الكبرى ليس فقط في الولايات المتحدة الأميركية، بل في العالم أجمع.

بسبب هذا الانهيار الذي تلافاه أوباما بحجز أموال المواطنين الأميركيين، أعادت دول العالم النظر في نظام معولم قد يطيح بها من دون أن تكون هي مسؤولة عن أخطاء ارتكبها النظام المالي الأميركي الذي أفلت العنان للمصارف الأميركية التي تتصرّف من دون أيّ ضوابط أو رقابة.

العامل الاول إذاً هو زعزعة ثقة العالم بالنظام المصرفي الأميركي، وبالتالي أخذ الاحتياطات اللازمة لدرء تبعات انهيار هذا النظام، كانت نتيجتها إنشاء نظام مالي بديل تترأسه كلّ من الصين وروسيا ويضمّ دولاً أخرى، يتبادل السلع على أساس عملات محلية غير الدولار، ويقوم بمشاريع إنمائية مستقلة.

بالإضافة الى تحوّل العالم باتجاه التفتيش عن حلول بديلة للنظام المالي الأميركي المعولم، نشأت أزمة اقتصادية كبرى داخل الولايات المتحدة الأميركية من جراء العولمة نفسها التي نادى بها، وشجّعها، ونشرها الرأسماليون الأميركيون في الدرجة الاولى.

لقد أخذ الرأسمال الأميركي يتسرّب خارج أراضي الولايات المتحدة الأميركية، ما يعود بالنفع على أقلية محدودة العدد من كبار الرأسماليين الأميركيين، لكنه يؤدّي الى إغلاق المصانع والمعامل والصناعات في أرجاء الدولة الأميركية. انتقل العمل من داخل هذه الأخيرة الى خارجها، وبشكل خاص الى غريمتها: الصين. فلا دولة تستطيع منافسة اليد العاملة الرخيصة الصينية، وأيّ منافسة للسوق الصينية محتومة بالفشل.

التتمة ص8

انهارت الطبقة الوسطى الأميركية، وأصبحت البطالة عالية، وتبخر الحلم الأميركي بإمكانية الحصول على منزل وسيارة لكلّ عائلة، وتشرّدت ألوف العائلات، خاصة أنّ الولايات المتحدة الأميركية ليست بدولة رعائية، فهي لا تؤمّن ضماناً صحياً مجانياً، ولا ضماناً اجتماعياً كما تفعل دول أوروبا، أو كندا أو اوستراليا، أو حتى دول أميركا اللاتينية، على فقرها، ككوبا مثلاً. هذه الشريحة هي التي صوّتت لدونالد ترامب، لأنّ هيلاري كلينتون أرادت أن تكمل مسيرة العولمة، فلقد وعد ترامب بإعادة تفعيل الاقتصاد والمصانع، وإعطاء الأولوية لرفاهية الشعب الأميركي.

العودة إلى ترسيخ القومية

مسار العولمة الذي خطته أميركا يستوجب الهيمنة الاقتصادية الشاملة على العالم، ومن أجل بلوغ هذا الهدف كان من الضروري إلغاء دور الدول الوطنية/ القومية الأخرى عبر محاربة كلّ أشكال الأنظمة الاشتراكية أو القومية، ودفع دول العالم الثالث خاصة الى خصخصة ممتلكات الدولة، وتخلي الدولة عن لعب أيّ دور ناظم في المجتمع أو الاقتصاد. تحرير السوق أدّى الى القضاء على اقتصاد الدول النامية التي لا تستطيع منافسة الدول الصناعية الكبرى، وحوّلها مراكز استهلاك لا إنتاج.

أهداف العولمة اذاً تتضارب مع وجود الدولة القومية التي تدافع عن مواطنيها وعن حقوقهم المادية والمعنوية. فالعولمة تلغي نهائياً مفهوم الدولة الديمقراطية، حيث يقرّر الشعب مصيره، ويُستبدل ذلك بهيئات ناظمة عابرة للدول، كما حصل في الاتحاد الاوروبي، ومثال هذا الاتحاد هو الأقلّ بشاعة من أمثلة دول أفريقيا والعالم العربي. فلقد وجدت دول الاتحاد الأوروبي الفقيرة كاليونان واسبانيا وإيطاليا أنها خسرت قراراتها المستقلة واصبح البرلمان الاوروبي هو الذي يبادر الى توجيه مسار هذه الدول شاءت أم أبت. وفي وضع من هذا النوع يبدو جلياً أنّ الدول القوية هي التي ستطغى على الدول الضعيفة، وفي حالة الاتحاد الاوروبي، اصبحت المانيا هي القاطرة التي تملي على الجميع ما عليهم فعله. الا ان الاتحاد الاوروبي، بما فيه المانيا، هو بدوره فريسة النفوذ الأميركي.

التمرّد على العولمة حاصل اليوم في الدول المتقدّمة والتي عملت جاهدة لإرغام الجميع الدخول في شبكتها. تمرّد مواطنوها، من الولايات المتحدة الأميركية إلى بريطانيا، لأنّ شعوبها لا تريد أن تصادَر حرياتها وقراراتها ومصيرها.

ترامب يتكلم باسم هذا المنحى الجديد، وكما يشدّد على أهمية الحفاظ على قومية ومصالح الولايات المتحدة الأميركية، فإنه أيضاً يؤكد بأنه لن يتدخل في أمور الدول الأخرى، وليس في صدد شنّ حروب على دول لتغيير أنظمتها.

هذا الموقف يقود الى النتائج التالية والتي هي معاكسة تماماً للسياسات التي سبقته:

أولاً: الاعتراف بالدول الأخرى وقبول الاختلاف بين نظامه وأنظمتها.

ثانياً: الاعتراف بتعدّد الأقطاب في العالم، بالرغم من هدف ترامب جعل أميركا الأقوى والأفضل بين الدول.

ثالثاً: الالتزام بالقوانين الدولية في فضّ النزاعات بين الدول.

رابعاً: اعتراف ترامب ان لا وجود للدولة الديمقراطية الا في إطار الدولة القومية التي يقرّر شعبها مصيرها، ورفض خزعبلات الـ establishment الأميركي الذي يتظاهر بأنه يريد فرض الديمقراطية على الشعوب الأخرى بحدّ السلاح والدمار.

خامساً: يريد ترامب القضاء على الإرهاب التكفيري الآخذ في التفشي في العالم، وهو يقول صراحة إنه نتاج الإدارات الأميركية السابقة. أما لماذا أرادت هذه الإدارات دعم وتمويل الإرهاب التكفيري المبني على الفكر الوهابي الإلغائي، فلأنّ هدفها كان استعمار العالم ووضعه تحت الهيمنة الأميركية من دون اللجوء الى جنود أميركيين يقومون بهذه المهمة ويُقتلون، فالمواطنون الأميركيون يرفضون الحرب الا في حال الدفاع عن ارضهم القومية. هيمنة الإسلام السياسي الذي أدرجه أوباما تتطابق مع معايير العولمة العابرة للدول القومية، لكنه لا يتماشى البتة مع مفاهيم الدولة القومية العلمانية، وبالتالي يرفضه ترامب.

President Trump: Nationalist Capitalism, An Alternative to Globalization?

Global Research, January 28, 2017
CIA-trump

During his inaugural speech, President Trump clearly and forcefully outlined the strategic political-economic policies he will pursue over the next four years.  Anti-Trump journalist, editorialists, academics and experts, who appear in the Financial Times, New York Times, Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal have repeatedly distorted and lied about the President’s program as well as his critique of existing and past policies.

We will begin by seriously discussing President Trump’s critique of the contemporary political economy and proceed to elaborate on his alternatives and its weaknesses.

President Trump’s Critique of the Ruling Class

The centerpiece of Trump’s critique of the current ruling elite is the negative impact of its form of globalization on US production, trade and fiscal imbalances and on the labor market.  Trump cites the fact that US industrial capitalism has drastically shifted the locus of its investments, innovations and profits overseas as an example of globalization’s negative effects.  For two decades many politicians and pundits have bemoaned the loss of well-paid jobs and stable local industries as part of their campaign rhetoric or in public meetings, but none have taken any effective action against these most harmful aspects of globalization.  Trump denounced them as “all talk and no action” while promising to end the empty speeches and implement major changes.

President Trump targeted importers who bring in cheap products from overseas manufacturers for the American market undermining US producers and workers.  His economic strategy of prioritizing US industries is an implicit critique of the shift from productive capital to financial and speculative capital under the previous four administrations.  His inaugural address attacking the elites who abandon the ‘rust belt’ for Wall Street is matched by his promise to the working class: “Hear these words!  You will never be ignored again.” Trump’s own words portray the ruling class ‘as pigs at the trough’ (Financial Times, 1/23/2017, p. 11)

Trump’s Political-Economic Critique

President Trump emphasizes market negotiations with overseas partners and adversaries.  He has repeatedly criticized the mass media and politicians’ mindless promotion of free markets and aggressive militarism as undermining the nation’s capacity to negotiate profitable deals.

President Trump’s immigration policy is closely related to his strategic ‘America First’ labor policy.  Massive inflows of immigrant labor have been used to undermine US workers’ wages, labor rights and stable employment.  This was first documented in the meat packing industry, followed by textile, poultry and construction industries.  Trump’s proposal is to limit immigration to allow US workers to shift the balance of power between capital and labor and strengthen the power of organized labor to negotiate wages, conditions and benefits.  Trump’s critique of mass immigration is based on the fact that skilled American workers have been available for employment in the same sectors if wages were raised and work conditions were improved to permit dignified, stable living standards for their families.

President Trump’s Political Critique

Trump points to trade agreements, which have led to huge deficits, and concludes that US negotiators have been failures.  He argues that previous US presidents have signed multi-lateral agreements, to secure military alliances and bases, at the expense of negotiating job-creating economic pacts.  His presidency promises to change the equation:  He wants to tear up or renegotiate unfavorable economic treaties while reducing US overseas military commitments and demands NATO allies shoulder more of their own defense budgets.  Immediately upon taking office Trump canceled the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and convoked a meeting with Canada and Mexico to renegotiate NAFTA.

Trump’s agenda has featured plans for hundred-billion dollar infrastructure projects, including building controversial oil and gas pipelines from Canada to the US Gulf.  It is clear that these pipelines violate existing treaties with indigenous people and threaten ecological mayhem.  However, by prioritizing the use of American-made construction material and insisting on hiring only US workers, his controversial policies will form the basis for developing well-paid American jobs.

The emphasis on investment and jobs in the US is a complete break with the previous Administration, where President Obama focused on waging multiple wars in the Middle East , increasing public debt and the trade deficit.

Trump’s inaugural address issued a stern promise: “The American carnage stops right now and stops right here!”  This resonated with a huge sector of the working class and was spoken before an assemblage of the very architects of four decades of job-destroying globalization.  ‘Carnage’ carried a double meaning:  Widespread carnage resulted from Obama and other administrations’ destruction of domestic jobs resulting in decay and bankruptcy of rural, small town and urban communities.  This domestic carnage was the other side of the coin of their policies of conducting endless overseas wars spreading carnage to three continents.  The last fifteen years of political leadership spread domestic carnage by allowing the epidemic of drug addiction (mostly related to uncontrolled synthetic opiate prescriptions) to kill hundreds of thousands of mostly young American’s and destroy the lives of millions.  Trump promised to finally address this ‘carnage’ of wasted lives.   Unfortunately, he did not hold ‘Big Pharma’ and the medical community responsible for its role in spreading drug addiction into the deepest corners of the economically devastated rural America .  Trump criticized previous elected officials for authorizing huge military subsidies to ‘allies’ while making it clear that his critique did not include US military procurement policies and would not contradict his promise to ‘reinforce old alliances’ (NATO).

Truth and Lies: Garbage Journalists and Arm Chair Militarists

Among the most outrageous example of the mass media’s hysteria about Trump’s New Economy is the systematic and vitriolic series of fabrications designed to obscure the grim national reality that Trump has promised to address.  We will discuss and compare the accounts published by ‘garbage journalists (GJ’s)’ and present a more accurate version of the situation.

The respectable garbage journalists of the Financial Timesclaim that Trump wants to ‘destroy world trade’.  In fact, Trumps has repeatedly stated his intention to increase international trade.  What Trump proposes is to increase US world trade from the inside, rather than from overseas.  He seeks to re-negotiate the terms of multilateral and bilateral trade agreements to secure greater reciprocity with trading partners.  Under Obama, the US was more aggressive in imposing trade tariffs that any other country in the OECD.

Garbage journalists label Trump as a ‘protectionist’,confusing his policies to re-industrialize the economy with autarky.  Trump will promote exports and imports, retain an open economy, while increasing the role of the US as a producer and exporter.. The US will become more selective in its imports.  Trump will favor the growth of manufacturing exporters and increase imports of primary commodities and advanced technology while reducing the import of automobiles, steel and household consumer products.

Trump’s opposition to ‘globalization’ has been conflated by the garbage journalists of the Washington Post as a dire threat to the ‘the post-Second World War economic order’.  In fact, vast changes have already rendered the old order obsolete and attempts to retain it have led to crises, wars and more decay.  Trump has recognized the obsolete nature of the old economic order and stated that change is necessary.

The Obsolete Old Order and the Dubious New Economy

At the end of the Second World War, most of Western Europe and Japan resorted to highly restrictive ‘protectionist’ industrial and monetary policies to rebuild their economies.  Only after a period of prolonged recovery did Germany and Japan carefully and selectively liberalize their economic policies.

In recent decades, Russia was drastically transformed from a powerful collectivist economy to a capitalist vassal-gangster oligarchy and more recently to a reconstituted mixed economy and strong central state.  China has been transformed from a collectivist economy, isolated from world trade, into the world’s second most powerful economy, displacing the US as Asia and Latin America ’s largest trading partner.

Once controlling 50% of world trade, the US share is now less than 20%.  This decline is partly due to the dismantling of its industrial economy when its manufacturers moved their factories abroad.

Despite the transformation of the world order, recent US presidents have failed to recognize the need to re-organize the American political economy.  Instead of recognizing, adapting and accepting shifts in power and market relations, they sought to intensify previous patterns of dominance through war, military intervention and bloody destructive ‘regime changes’ – thus devastating, rather than creating markets for US goods. Instead of recognizing China’s immense economic power and seek to re-negotiate trade and co-operative agreements, they have stupidly excluded China from regional and international trade pacts, to the extent of crudely bullying their junior Asian trade partners, and launching a policy of military encirclement and provocation in the South China Seas.  While Trump recognized these changes and the need to renegotiate economic ties, his cabinet appointees seek to extend Obama’s militarist policies of confrontation.

Under the previous administrations, Washington ignored Russia ’s resurrection, recovery and growth as a regional and world power.  When reality finally took root, previous US administrations increased their meddling among the Soviet Union’s former allies and set up military bases and war exercises on Russia ’s borders.  Instead of deepening trade and investment with Russia , Washington spent billions on sanctions and military spending – especially fomenting the violent putchist regime in Ukraine .  Obama’s policies promoting the violent seizure of power in Ukraine, Syria and Libya were motivated by his desire to overthrow governments friendly to Russia – devastating those countries and ultimately strengthening Russia’s will to consolidate and defend its borders and to form new strategic alliances.

Early in his campaign, Trump recognized the new world realities and proposed to change the substance, symbols, rhetoric and relations with adversaries and allies – adding up to a New Economy.

First and foremost, Trump looked at the disastrous wars in the Middle East and recognized the limits of US military power:  The US could not engage in multiple, open-ended wars of conquest and occupation in the Middle East, North Africa and Asia without paying major domestic costs.

Secondly, Trump recognized that Russia was not a strategic military threat to the United States .  Furthermore, the Russian government under Vladimir Putin was willing to cooperate with the US to defeat a mutual enemy – ISIS and its terrorist networks.  Russia was also keen to re-open its markets to the US investors, who were also anxious to return after years of the Obama-Clinton-Kerry imposed sanctions.  Trump, the realist, proposes to end sanctions and restore favorable market relations.

Thirdly, it is clear to Trump that the US wars in the Middle East imposed enormous costs with minimal benefits for the US economy.  He wants to increase market relations with the regional economic and military powers, like Turkey , Israel and the Gulf monarchies.

Trump is not interested in Palestine , Yemen , Syria or the Kurds – which do not offer much investment and trade opportunities.  He ignores the enormous regional economic and military power of Iran ,  Nevertheless Trump has proposed to re-negotiate the recent six-nation agreement with Iran in order to improve the US side of the bargain.  His hostile campaign rhetoricagainst Tehran may have been designed to placate Israel and its powerful domestic ‘Israel-Firsters’ fifth column.  This certainly came into conflict with his ‘America First’ pronouncements.  It remains to be seen whether Donald Trump will retain a ‘show’ of submission to the Zionist project of an expansionist Israel while proceeding to include Iran as a part of his regional market agenda.

The Garbage Journalists claim that Trump has adopted a new bellicose stance toward China and threatens to launch a ‘protectionist agenda’, which will ultimately push the trans-Pacific countries closer to Beijing .  On the contrary, Trump appears intent on renegotiating and increasing trade via bilateral agreements.

Trump will most probably maintain, but not expand, Obama’s military encirclement of China ’s maritime boundaries which threaten its vital shipping routes.  Nevertheless, unlike Obama, Trump will re-negotiate economic and trade relations with Beijing – viewing China as a major economic power and not a developing nation intent on protecting its ‘infant industries’.  Trump’s realism reflect the new economic order:  China is a mature, highly competitive, world economic power, which has been out-competing the US , in part by retaining its own state subsidies and incentives from its earlier economic phase.  This has led to significant imbalances.  Trump, the realist, recognizes that China offers great opportunities for trade and investment if the US can secure reciprocal agreements, which lead to a more favorable balance of trade.

Trump does not want to launch a ‘trade war’ with China , but he needs to restore the US as a major ‘exporter’ nation in order to implement his domestic economic agenda.  The negotiations with the Chinese will be very difficult because the US importer-elite are against the Trump agenda and side with the Beijing ’s formidable export-oriented ruling class.

Moreover, because Wall Street’s banking elite is pleading with Beijing to enter China ’s financial markets, the financial sector is an unwilling and unstable ally to Trump’s pro-industrial policies.

Conclusion

Trump is not a ‘protectionist’, nor is he opposed to ‘free-trade’.  These charges by the garbage journalists are baseless.  Trump does not oppose US economic imperialist policies abroad.  However, Trump is a market realist who recognizes that military conquest is costly and, in the contemporary world context, a losing economic proposition for the US .  He recognizes that the US must turn from a predominant finance and import economy to a manufacturing and export economy.

Trump views Russia as a potential economic partner and military ally in ending the wars in Syria , Iraq , Afghanistan and Ukraine , and especially in defeating the terrorist threat of ISIS .  He sees China as a powerful economic competitor, which has been taking advantage of outmoded trade privileges and wants to re-negotiate trade pacts in line with the current balance of economic power.

Trump is a capitalist-nationalist, a market-imperialist and political realist, who is willing to trample on women’s rights, climate change legislation, indigenous treaties and immigrant rights.  His cabinet appointments and his Republican colleagues in Congress are motivated by a militarist ideology closer to the Obama-Clinton doctrine than to Trumps new ‘America First’ agenda.  He has surrounded his Cabinet with military imperialists, territorial expansionists and delusional fanatics.

Who will win out in the short or long term remains to be seen.  What is clear is that the liberals, Democratic Party hacks and advocates of Little Mussolini black shirted street thugs will be on the side of the imperialists and will find plenty of allies among and around the Trump regime.

 

‘The Euro’ by Stiglitz: Even fake leftists say ‘exit’

January 29, 2017

by Ramin Mazaheri

‘The Euro’ by Stiglitz: Even fake leftists say ‘exit’

“The Euro”, both the monetary system and the book of the same name by Nobel-Prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz, can appear complicated.

Take heart from Noam Chomsky, who wrote that nothing in the social sciences cannot be understood by the average bus driver in a couple of minutes – this is not calculus or physics, after all.

Give me just three paragraphs to simplify everything:

Stiglitz successfully makes two indisputable academic assertions: The euro has failed in its promise to bring about prosperity and security, and that there is nothing in its organizational structure which allows for the possibility for change.

Take a moment and realize these do not constitute an attack on the euro – these are clear facts, the former of which is clear to anyone. You’ll have to take his academic word for the latter assertion, unless perusing the euro’s structure is your idea of a fun Saturday night.

After covering the entirety of the Eurozone crisis from France, it is impossible to refute my assertions that the Eurozone has failed to bring about prosperity and security for the average Frenchman, and that there is nothing in the mainstream political structure which allows for the possibility for change.

Trust us. The first part is the main part, anyway.

I thought I’d revisit Stiglitz’s book, seeing as how the National Front’s Marine Le Pen may win the presidency in a few months largely thanks to her promise to leave the euro.

It’s vital to realize that it is not just right-wing ignoramuses like me and Le Pen who want out of the Eurozone – a mainstream, Nobel Prize-winning economist has reached the same conclusion. What I am saying here is: You don’t have to agree with us, but you cannot denigrate euro-exiters by calling us stupid or racist like you did Brexiters or Trumpers – at some point you have to openly debate.

“The Euro” is very good and worth reading. If you want know the truth about the Eurozone, read the analysis of someone who has no personal stake in it, like Stiglitz.

But believing that the euro should continue should be referred to as “Islamic market fundamentalism”, not because it has one single thing to do with Islam, but because then it would hit home with the average Westerner just how fanatical “market fundamentalism”, or “neoliberalism” truly is.

Such a term should make the deranged ideological basis of the Eurozone crystal-clear: Neoliberals are not at all constrained by the facts of 25 years of failure in Africa, a lost decade in Latin America, and nearly-lost decade in the Eurozone – Stiglitz makes this point repeatedly throughout the book.

What Stiglitz fails to do is to point out that the simple root of the Eurozone is capitalism and that this is the ideology which must be questioned, not simply its capitalist variant of neoliberalism.

I can easily relay a bunch of his facts, combine them with my on-the-ground experiences and convincingly make the urgent case that the Eurozone is flawed and must be abandoned or replaced.

But this is not that column.

I want this column to be about something else, and I will get right to the heart of the matter:

Stiglitz is about as leftist an economist as the mainstream media is permitted to report on.

That is why my headline calls him a “fake leftist”- I don’t think any economist would call him a “leftist economist”, but for all intents and purposes he is as economically left as the average person can find without caring enough to dig deeper.

Stiglitz is on the left of the right-wing; which makes him a centrist-tending-right. That he is consistently presented as a “progressive” economist is the mistake this column seeks to make right.

And like so many “progressives” who fall short of real leftism, even Stiglitz cannot believe his own eyes or his own words.

Fake progressives always let them off the hook

So many times in “The Euro” Stiglitz delivers a devastating conclusion about capitalism, only to immediately lets it off the hook by claiming bafflement as to how this could possibly happen. This failure is intellectually indefensible, intellectually unsatisfying, regressive and violently damaging. This passage is, unfortunately, typical.

“Austerity has always and everywhere had the contractionary effects observed in Europe: the greater the austerity, the greater the economic contraction. Why the Troika would have thought that this time in Europe it would be different is mystifying.”

It is not mystifying – this is what capitalism does over and over. Just as they sought in Africa and Latin America, neoliberals want to impose labor code rollbacks and deregulate; in Europe they wanted to end the gains Europeans have fought decades to win. It has worked in France – Hollande rammed through the “Macron Law” last year despite mass protests, and he arrested thousands of demonstrators to achieve it.

Time after time Stiglitz presents a devastating indictment which totally attacks the premise that capitalism is concerned with good governance and promoting even basic equality, only to soft-pedal backwards.

“But the eurozone programs have been a success, in the sense that the German and French banks have been repaid….Perhaps the real goals of Germany and the other creditor countries have indeed been achieved.”

For those not following Europe closely, this is exactly what has happened since the European Sovereign Debt Crisis began and why people have lost faith in the Eurozone: the rich countries of France, the Netherlands and Germany have no solidarity with the average Eurozone citizen at all (which is endemic in capitalism), and are ruthlessly waging economic colonization against the poorer nations (which is endemic in capitalism). It is the banks of France and Germany which have been bailed out, not the average indebted person in Greece or Finland, as Stiglitz repeatedly proves.

Spain and Ireland didn’t even need a bailout in 2009: They had a fiscal surplus and healthy debt-to-GDP ratios, but not anymore. Greece is now actually running a fiscal surplus! No matter – they are slated to be paying back banks further west and north for perhaps decades.

Stiglitz says these things, backed by academic facts, all the time in his book.

And yet with that seemingly ironic “perhaps the real goals” statement –a question mark is missing, which must be a grammatical error because it is clearly a question – Stiglitz simply ends the matter and moves on to a new topic. Tellingly, it is “The Need for Growth”.

Perhaps if Stiglitz were not trapped by capitalist ideology, by capitalism’s obsession with growth, he could have pursued his own hypothesis (which matches with reality) even further. But he didn’t, he dropped the potato once it got hot, or he doesn’t realize he has a capitalist-programmed obsession with “growth”.

A cynic might say that this was the intent of the law: to preserve power relations. But I am convinced that the rule in Europe was driven more by ideology and misguided economic beliefs than narrow self- interest.”

It is not at all cynical to say that capitalists in the Eurozone have not yet rectified a long-standing criticism by the left: that capitalism needlessly and inefficiently promotes international competition and imperialistic rivalries. Leftists have said this for decades, are saying it now, and will say it forever until 1) capitalism stops doing it, which they won’t (can’t) or 2) capitalism finds a solution to this problem, which they can’t (won’t).

Either Stiglitz, with all of his honorary degrees, has not read basic leftist economist thought, or he has forgotten it, or he has ignored it in the confirmation bias of his definitely non-progressive adoration of capitalism.

Like all capitalist promoters, and like all mainstream media members who live in a 24-hour news cycle, instead of taking a longer view Stiglitz is guilty of viewing the Eurozone as some sort of isolated case in capitalism when the moment arrives from clear conclusions and logical condemnation. He remains in his ivory tower, and his telescope does not take in the full historical view.

“Its construction (the ECB) was based on ideological propositions that were fashionable at the time (Stiglitz is discussing the ECB’s mandate, which is limited to only inflation, and not growth, employment, etc.) These beliefs, however, are increasingly questioned, especially in the aftermath of the 2008 global financial crisis.”

An obsession with inflation is not a “fashion”: this is a fundamental concern of capitalism throughout its history. Why? Inflation is called “the great leveler” for a reason – it reduces the values of the most immense fortunes. The rich have far more to lose than anyone else from inflation!

It also reduces debts, so God send us inflation! At least for the poor debtors, who will be able to pay off their burden and stop being tortured.

Inflation also reduces the power of interest – without that power, bankers/moneylenders will have to actually work for a living, which is why they fear it so.

Finally, lacking the stability provided by communistic cooperation, an inflation-induced downturn also spells chaos, and that could force a revolution and compel the wealthy to flee to some other country with only a part of their ill-gotten gains (see revolutions in Russia, China, Cuba and Iran for examples).

Stiglitz knows that for all these reasons an obsession with inflation is fundamental, not fashionable.

“The dismal (economic) forecasts made it clear: the Troika’s grasp of the underlying economics was abysmal”.

Really? All those eggheads with their salaries so much bigger than mine don’t understand their own domain?

The problem here is not that people with a PhD do not “grasp” their own field – the problem is their ideology.

It is not a conspiracy of stupidity or a confederacy of dunces – it’s the promotion of capitalism over communism.

The ideology of communism shows clearly that the Eurozone was indeed a conspiracy – a money-lending cartel on the grandest scope. And why would such a scope be out of the reach of banks whose yearly gross corporate product can exceed half of all nations in the world?

Stiglitz says that from 1999-2007 the Eurozone had a short period of success – “divergence reigned” – i.e., rich countries loaned to poor Eurozone members (economic redistribution). But what happened is those loans were called in during a crisis, and they could not be repaid.

We know that bankers routinely aim for such a scenario to happen. What happened in the Eurozone has happened all over the 3rd world during the 2+ centuries of European-led imperialism – indebted countries were picked apart by foreigners.

To say that the bankers/Eurozone planners/Troika didn’t know what they were doing is pathetic. Stiglitz has too much sympathy, perhaps, or not enough contempt for negligence.

Was it just an accident, a slip, that they opted for a property tax that would have inflicted pain on ordinary Greeks, rather than one that would have hit the oligarchs?”

This is – somehow – an honest question from Stiglitz, and a less ideologically-rigorous reader will be lulled into complacency and sympathy for those who are orchestrating the re-colonization of Greece.

Stiglitz poses the question but he never takes a stand. This is as far as a person like him is willing to go – fake leftism. The leftism that nobody wants to associate with. The leftism that loses. The leftism that embarrasses leftists to say that they are leftists.

To take a stand would force Stiglitz to change his fundamentally pro-capitalist view, and it would risk all those honorary degrees. (I have a t-shirt which reads “Where’s my bailout?”. Where’s my honorary degree, huh? Hundreds of unpopular leftist reports and French tear gas attacks don’t cut it, eh?)

For those who do go further we conclude: “No, it was not an accident! It happens all the time. Such pro-oligarchy decisions are routine in capitalism. This is just one measly little example you have publicized and you haven’t even interpreted it correctly, Dr. Stiglitz, PhD, Esq, Rev., DDS,!”

Why care about ‘alternative facts’ when ideology is neglected?

Facts don’t matter because in the social sciences ideology filters everything, people. Again, this is not calculus or physics – if it was, then economic policy wouldn’t be disputed and austerity wouldn’t still be reigning.

The capitalists have an ideology and they won’t call it “Islamic market fundamentalism” so they call it “neoliberalism”, and it is the foundation of the Eurozone.

You want to be a capitalist and not an “Islamic market fundamentalist”, you complain? The Eurozone is necessary, you say?

Fine. Let’s judge the Eurozone on your own neoliberal terms: As a capitalist you obviously accept that economic downturns and depressions are simply a part of life, and you are willing to make everyone suffer the consequences.

But the judge of any capitalist policy is how long and how deep your capitalist downturns are, and by this fair gauge the EU has totally failed. This will be a lost decade. I pity the poor and unemployed youth because they are suffering for the refusal to accept the facts which impose a change of ideology.

There is an alternative to the Eurozone – it has not been decreed by God. As Stiglitz writes, monetary systems come and go. If structural limitations prevent us from changing the euro then the euro has to go.

Capitalist reader, even your emperor is cold from wearing no clothes: Germany has averaged 0.8% annual growth since 2007 – that is failure, and this is your leader and success story?

Joe oughtta know better

But Joseph Stiglitz, with all his egghead degrees that make him so much smarter than me and your regular bus driver, should know extremely well how capitalism ravages everything because isn’t he reading economic literature from the left at least some of the time?

That is not clear. But I say Stiglitz should know better because he is from Gary, Indiana, my former hometown.

Gary, if you don’t know, is the American industrial hellhole par excellence. It is the poorest, Blackest, most violent city in America, per capita. White flight, racism, capitalism, pollution, drugs, guns, blocked futures – it all the stuff nobody wants.

You cannot compare it with a stereotypical Soviet-era counterpart because there is humiliating racism, deadly violence and crack instead of vodka.

Gary truly is the foul, steel-fume belching armpit of America. Most people in nearby Chicago are too frightened to even stop there for gas…and mainstream media/politicians couldn’t care less.

Gary’s dismal past, present and future should have been enough for Stiglitz to renounce capitalism, but it wasn’t.

Like most “progressives” who do not go far enough to make any real or lasting difference, the tone throughout his book is that Stiglitz “sincerely cares”. He really, truly does and…this only makes him more enlightened than your average, selfish fascist.

Like most of his fake-leftist peers he never discusses “class”, but loves to discuss the environment. And if there was an economic component to transgender bathroom rights I’m reasonably sure Stiglitz would have focused on that as well.

He – by blinding himself to a true leftist interpretation – by being content with being “mystified” in the most non-poetic ways in the most dismal of “sciences” – he creates a false impression of what “progressive” should truly mean.

The best that such a half-hearted progressive like Stiglitz can do is provide us ammunition for the struggle – and he does in “The Euro”.

This makes him without fault, but it does not earn him great praise. Somebody in his influential position should break free of his mainstream confines and propose real solutions instead of trying to fix what he clearly knows is fundamentally broken: capitalism.

Being “mystified’ should not earn you prizes in economics – the people deserve immediate solutions.

The Euro has proven there is no “Third Way”

Urbane, cultured, human rights-loving Europe has not been able to show that one is able to combine a capitalism and communism in a capitalism-centered system.

This is exactly what the Euro was supposed to do. Capitalism is simply too strong and must be confined in a drastic manner.

The Eurozone has allowed European imperialism to turn on itself. This should be as crystal clear to you by now as it is to an increasing number of Eurozone citizens.

What is working, and even despite the global recession, is combining capitalism and communism in a communism-centered system.

China is booming; Cuba has had steady 2% growth since the Great Recession started, despite the genocidal blockade; since 1989 in Iran (communism’s ignored victory) only one country in the world has increased their Human Development Index more – South Korea.

Destroy the euro, yes, because it has been created in a way so that it is possible to reform, as Stiglitz repeatedly demonstrates. It was an economic union before there was a political union, and the pain of muddling through to finally get that political union correct is going to hurt hundreds of millions of people for decades – that price is too high.

There has to be another way, even though pro-euro people repeatedly cry TINA: There Is No Alternative. The euro was, after all, created in 1992 – the USSR was over and so was “history”. This anti-democratic philosophy has been inscribed in the euro’s genetic structure, per Stiglitz .

But the only way any pan-European project can ever possibly succeed – and Stiglitz repeatedly notes this as well – is through solidarity.

What he doesn’t say is that there is no pan-national solidarity ever in capitalism.

He holds up the US model as an example, but the US has always been, fundamentally, the same country. It’s not as if the US merged with Native American tribes or territories of freed Africans. Europe requires their own solution, not just a US copy, just as Cuba requires their own model, Iran their own model, etc.

The euro has undoubtedly decreased the sentiment of solidarity so vital to something like the euro ever having a chance of working. Greece distrusts Germany, Germany distrusts Portugal, France distrusts everybody including other Frenchmen, etc.

There can be no doubt about that. The capitalist euro project has ruined European solidarity, and I – intrepid reporter on the ground – can report to you that I see no “solidarity boom” on the horizon. I see the far-right, racism, protectionism and closing of borders. Why? Well, the euro has failed to bring about prosperity and security, dummy – you can even ask a capitalist reactionary like Stiglitz!

Modern history proves that any sort of solidarity – especially pan-national or racial – requires a commitment to communist ideology. The USSR was the only empire built on affirmative action, after all.

Communism is the only way forward, as we’ve all known for decades. The question, if there is one, is not “if” but “how much”.

Stiglitz, and his fundamentally pro-capitalist fake leftist ilk, can see that but they look away.

Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for Press TV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. His work has appeared in various journals, magazines and websites, as well as on radio and television.

هل تشققت الدولة العميقة في أميريكا؟؟ زمن ترامب وقراءة في العاصفة القادمة

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نارام سرجون

احدى الحماقات التي اقترفها الهدوء هو أنه رضي أن ينسب اليه دور الخادم الذي يمهد لوصول العاصفة ويهمس في آذان الناس أن العاصفة قادمة .. رغم أن من الممكن أن تكون العاصفة هي التي تسبق الهدوء وليس الهدوء هو الذي يسبق العاصفة وتصبح العاصفة هي التي توطئ للهدوء وتعلن عن وصوله بشكل صاخب متوتر؟؟ .. ان التفكير السليم يقتضي أن نعيد النظر في كل القوالب القديمة للمسلّمات والبديهيات والمقولات المسبوكة والجاهزة .. وقلبها رأسا على عقب لنعرف ان مارددناه على مدى قرون كان خطأ .. وأن العبارات الموروثة ليست مقدسة .. واذا ماطبقنا هذه العبارة المقلوبة عن الهدوء والعاصفة على السياسة الاميركية فقد نصل الى توقعات واقعية ..

فهل يكون ترامب هو العاصفة الحقيقية ويكون أوباما هو الهدوء الذي سبق العاصفة؟؟ أم أن ترامب في الحقيقة هو الهدوء الذي يتلو العاصفة بعد تلك العاصفة السوداء التي أطلقها عهد اوباما وكلينتون على الشرق الاوسط ةسميت الربيع العربي حين اعتقدنا أن بوش هو العاصفة وأن اوباما هو الهدوء الذي يتلوها .. ؟؟

قد يكون من المبكر جدا وضع أي نبوءة عن عهد ترامب وكيف سيكون طقسه عاصفا أو ماطرا أم حارا .. لكن علينا ايضا ألا نجلس تحت المظلات أو على طاولات المقاهي وننظر عبر النوافذ الى تغيرات الطقس وحركة العابرين والقادمين الينا .. بل علينا أن نخرج من مخابئنا ونسير تحت السماء لاتحت الأسقف مهما كان الطقس .. وعلينا أن نبدأ بوضع خارطة السنوات الأربع القادمة كي نعلم كيف نتحرك ..

علينا أن نتابع مايحصل من جدل في أميريكا بشأن عهد ترامب .. فهذا الرجل هو نتاج صراعات الدولة العميقة الأميريكية حيث المجمع الصناعي العسكري وعتاولة المال والبنوك والكارتيلات والاحتكارات العملاقة وغير ذلك وهذه الكتل الرأسمالية الجبارة هي التي تقرر شكل الرئيس ولونه ومذاقه وطوله بل وتملي عليه خطاباته ولايجرؤ على أن يشذ عنها .. واذا ماتمرد أرسلت عليه ووتر غيت أو .. مونيكا لوينسكي .. ولكن الى جانب هذه الدولة العميقة التقليدية أو الكلاسيكية التي تولت ادارة البلاد لعقود كان هناك مايسمى حكومة الظل في تلك الأعماق .. وهي بقية الأثرياء والقطاعات الصناعية والراسمالية التي أوجدت تفاهما بينها وبين القوى العميقة الكلاسيكية التي تولت ادارة البلاد .. وكانت قوى الظل منكفئة طالما أن مصالحها لاتتأثر ولايتم الاعتداء عليها من قبل مؤسسات الدولة العميقة المنشغلة بمكاسبها ..

ترامب ليس من مرشحي المؤسسة التقليدية العميقة بل هو مؤشر على تحرك حكومة الظل الموازية وربما نهوض دولة عميقة أخرى لم تعد لامبالية بما تفعله الدولة العميقة التقليدية بل صارت ترى أن من حقها أن تقرر أيضا شكل الرئيس ولونه ورائحته ولسانه وتكتب له خطاباته وشعاراته .. وعلى هذا الاساس فان ترامب اما أن يكون نتيجة انشقاق ضمن الدولة العميقة التقليدية أو أن هناك نهاية لدولة عميقة كلاسيكية حكمت عقودا طويلة ولكنها تتعرض الآن للتحدي من دولة عميقة تشكلت بهدوء في الظل في العقود الأخيرة ووجدت أنها كبرت بما فيه الكفاية لتكون لها حصة في القرار السياسي بعد ان كانت مكتفية بأن تراعي القوة القديمة مصالحها المالية .. الى أن حدث الانهيار الاقتصادي الذي هدد مصالحها ووجدت أنه آن الأوان للحلول محل القوة القديمة او مقاسمتها السلطة للحفاظ على مصالحها لأن مغامرات القوة العميقة العسكرية من أجل مكاسبها الخاصة أدت الى نمو غير متكافئ في الاقتصاد الاميريكي حيث انتعش اقتصاد السلاح والنفط وتآكل الاقتصاد الباقي الذي لايبيع السلاح والنفط .. وهذا ماتسبب في أن ينمو اقتصاد العالم وخاصة في الصين على حساب الاقتصاد الاميركي الذي لاينتمي الى صناعة السلاح وتجارة النفط والمال .. وهنا بدأت طبقة من الأثرياء الجدد الذين نأوا بأنفسهم عن السياسة وقبلوا بحكومة الظل وصارت ترى أنها الأحق بقيادة الدولة والسيطرة على القوة العميقة التقليدية .. وهذه الطبقة التي تقود الاقتصاد الاميريكي المتضرر من سياسات صناعة الحروب تجد ان الحروب تفيد جزءا من النخب الرأسمالية الاميركية وخاصة في المجمع العسكري الصناعي وشركات الطاقة والنفط العابرة للقارات .. وهي حروب لاتعود كثيرا بالنفع على أثرياء حكومة الظل ..

وهذا مايمكن ان يفسر الضجيج والتحريض في أميريكا الذي يرافق ترامب منذ أول يوم لترشيحه وكانت الدولة العميقة الكلاسيكية تفضل كلينتون لانها استمرار لها في نفس النهج من الحروب وخدمة تجار السلاح والنفط دون الاكتراث لخطر النمو الصيني وتآكل الصناعة الأميريكة التي أقفلت فيها عشرات آلاف المصانع .. لكن دولة الظل العميقة تصدت لها وانتزعت السلطة منها لأنها صارت تحس بقلق بالغ وهي ترى أن الاقتصاد الصيني يأكل الاقتصاد الأميريكي الذي لم يبق فيه الا صناع السلاح وتجار النفط كقوة ضاربة كبرى ومنافسة .. ومايحاول الأثرياء الجدد فعله هو اعادة الحياة الى الصناعات والاقتصادات الاميريكة التي تآكلت عندما اهملتها الطبقة الثرية المتنفذة التي ركزت على تجارة السلاح والنفط والحروب فترامب هو تاجر عقارات ورجل أعمال يمثل تيارا عميقا خلفه صار يجد انه الأجدر بالدولة العميقة .. وماحدث في أميريكا هو انتقال السلطة في الدولة العميقة من أثرياء الى اثرياء آخرين .. أو من اثرياء قدماء الى أثرياء جدد .. وبمعنى أدق انقلاب أبيض داخل الدولة العميقة أخذها على حين غرة ..

أميريكا لم تتغير .. بل ماتغير فيها هو أن الدولة العميقة خاضت صراعا داخليا كبيرا وضاريا بين الأثرياء .. لأن الشرق الأوسط الذي ركزت عليه القوة القديمة العميقة تسبب في نهوض الصين التي سها عنها الساهون .. ويذهب البعض الى حد القول بأن مشروع الحروب فشل في سورية وأنه لاأمل في كسب الصراع الدولي على هذا البلد بل يبدو للكثيرين أن الروس والصينيين حولوا الكمين الاميركي في سورية الى كمين علق فيه الاميريكون الذين تم استدراجهم لخوض معركة استنزاف لما بقي لهم من قدرات وجهد لابقاء الاقتصاد الاميركي يتورم بتجارة السلاح والنفط ولكنه يذوب في كل الزوايا .. وخلصت حكومة الظل الى نتيجة مفادها أن معركة سورية لاطائل منها .. وأنها قد تتحول مع كلينتون الى حرب استنزاف لأميريكا بعد أن فشلت ادارة اوباما في احداث خرق فيها طوال ست سنوات .. ولابد من الانتقال الى مرحلة صراع مابعد سورية .. أي تحصين الاقتصاد الاميركي الذي يلتصق به الاقتصاد الصيني كالعلقة ويتغذى عليه لأنه صار معتمدا على ماتقدمه الصناعات الصينية له وللسوق الغربية عموما ..

وقد التقطت اولى تصريحات ترامب التي يقول فيها انه سيستأصل التطرف الاسلامي من العالم كله .. وأنه سيفكر في اقامة مناطق عازلة سورية تنفق عليها دول الخليج .. وبالرغم من ان هناك بيانات من البيت الأبيض استدركت التصريحات الى حد نفي بعضها تماما فان البعض يردد دون تفكير ان ترامب سيجرف في طريقه داعش وايران وحزب الله وسيملي وجهة نظره على بوتين الذي قد يقبل ببعض الخسائر مقابل تهدئة الحرب التي تستنزف موسكو ..
ولكن هذا التصور لايتماشى اطلاقا مع الهدف الرئيسي من الاطاحة بالقوة العميقة التقليدية .. فالانقلابيون الذين استولوا على قرار الدولة العميقة يريدون مكاسب سريعة ولن يغامروا في شن حروب غير محسوبة .. ولذلك فمن المرجح أن الحصافة السياسية ان يسارع ترامب الى شن حملة تدمير لداعش والنصرة لسهولة انجاز نصر عسكري مؤكد بوجود قوات عسكرية على الأرض مثل الجيشين السوري والعراقي .. وربما كان مايحدث من تبرؤ في الشمال السوري من النصرة وتكفير لها وتحريض مفاجئ عليها من حلفاء الأمس مؤشرا على بداية هذه الحملة .. وهذه الحملة على النصرة وداعش لها جاذبية خاصة لأن عملية تدميرهما سهلة جدا بوجود العامل الروسي والقوى الشعبية التي سترحب بذلك وتكسب ترامب نصرا معنويا كبيرا .. وهو نصر سهل سيسوق في الغرب على انه انجاز عسكري .. وفي نفس الوقت فان الحصافة السياسية من الانقلابيين الترامبيين تقتضي تجنب المواجهة مع ايران وحزب الله .. ليس حبا بهما بل لأنها معركة صعبة جدا وهي أكثر حماقة من معركة اوباما وكلينتون في سورية .. بل انها خدمة مباشرة للقوة العميقة المهزومة التي لم تكن تريد أكثر من هذا لانعاش المجمع الصناعي العسكري على حساب بقية الصناعات ولاظهار أن الأثرياء الجدد أكثر مغامرة ممن سبقوهم .. ولذلك يلتقط الديبلوماسيون اشارات صامتة ورسائل محمولة بشكل غير مباشر من قبل اصدقاء ترامب تطلب فيها أن يهدأ حزب الله على حدود شمال فلسطين المحتلة في الوقت الذي يتم فيه استئصال الارهاب الاسلامي الداعشي وارهاب النصرة كيلا يتسبب نشاط حزب الله ضد اسرائيل في احراج الحكام الجدد لأميريكا وايقاف مشروع استئصال حلفاء اسرائيل من الاسلاميين الجدد .. وسبب هذه الرغبة هي ادراك القوى الجديدة الاميركية ان كل المؤشرات تقول بأن اسرائيل بتحريض من القوة العميقة القديمة في الاستخبارات والمجمع الصناعي العسكري ستحاول بشدة استفزاز حزب الله لارغامه على الانخراط في مواجهة ضخمة تحرج ترامب وترغمه على العودة الى خط الصراع الشرق أوسطي بعيدا عن أجندته التي تريد تجميد أو تهدئة الانخراط في معادلات الشرق الأوسط على قاعدة تثبيت خطوط هدنة وتفاهمات طويلة الأمد طوال فترة ترامب الأولى على الأقل .. ويتمنى هؤلاء أن يتمتع حزب الله بأقصى درجات ضبط النفس .. الضرورية .. عندما تتحرش به اسرائيل التي مهدت لهذا التحرش باستخدام طائرات ف 35 لأول مرة منذرة بعودة استخدامها ضد شخصيات وقيادات حزب الله في الجنوب ..

الطقس الذي وصل سيكون مزيجا من هدوء عاصف .. فالعاصفة مقبلة على داعش والنصرة والمشروع الاخواني كجزء حتمي من تخلي ترامب عن اطلاق المشروع الاسلامي كرأس حربة في مشروع الحروب القادمة لأوباما وهيلاري كلينتون .. ولكن ثمن الهدوء في محور المقاومة قد تقرره طبيعة الصراع بين القوتين العميقتين اللتين تتصارعان تحت الارض في أعماق الحكم وتقرره طبيعة التفاهمات بينهما وقدرة كل منهما على أن تستدرج الاخرى الى أرضها وأولوياتها .. و الأحداث تشير الى أن القوة التقليدية لم تستسلم وهي تحرك كل العواصف ضد ترامب وتريد جره الى ايديولوجيتها بالقوة .. وهو في مقابل ذلك أضعف من ان يغامر بمناطق عازلة في سورية فيما هو يتجه نحو اقاصي الشرق لاستعادة ماأخذته الصين من اميريكا التي كانت مشغولة بالحروب .. وحتى زوال الغبار عن الصراع فان الزمن القادم الينا سيكون زمن اعادة بناء محور المقاومة واعادة هيكلته واستراتيجياته وعقيدته العسكرية والايديولوجية بناء على انتصارات مرتقبة قريبا في سورية .. واستثمار النصر في ظل غياب قوى اقليمية أو تقهقرها وصعود أخرى لاعادة ترميم نظرية الصراع العربي الصهيوني التي تآكلت في زمن الربيع العربي الاسلامي .. وهذا الاحياء للصراع العربي الصهيوني سيكون كفيلا باسقاط النظريات البديلة عن صراع الهويات والطوائف .. وهو بدوره مرتبط بنهاية مشروعين كبيرين في زمن ترامب هما المشروعان الاسلاميان المتحالفان الاخواني العثماني والوهابي .. ومن هذه المنصة سنحقق وثبتنا القادمة ..

علينا ان نتذكر اننا لاننتظر خيرا من ترامب ولانراهن عليه بل على ماأنجزناه حتى الآن ودخل في حسابات القوة العميقة الجديدة .. واذا كان من شيء يجب ان نقر به جميعا فهو أن الهزة العميقة التي منيت بها القوة العميقة الأميريكة التقليدية ليست سهله عليها وكانت فوق تصوراتها .. وفاجأها الانقلاب القادم من قوى الظل .. الا أن هذا الزلزال الذي ضرب أعصاب القوة الأميريكية العتيقة التقليدية بدأ من سورية وليس من واشنطن أو وول ستريت .. لأن السكون كان في الأعماق الاميركية غير قادر على التحرك الا عندما تبين ان العقبة الكأداء في الشرق – أي سورية – كشفت بشكل واضح أن الاقتصاد الأميريكي منهمك بالحروب والمواجهات الطويلة الخاسرة واقتصاد الحروب من اجل مكاسب البعض فيما هو يموت ببطء في بقية أميريكا ويتراجع في العالم .. وهذه المواجهة مع الحقيقة بدأت مع تحدي سورية وحلفائها لجورج بوش في العراق وتحدي سورية لاوباما في سورية نفسها .. وهذا ماجعل القوى الاميريكة الاخرى تميل لأن توقف هذا النزيف في القوة الاقتصادية الاميركية المسخّرة من أجل خدمة صناعة النفط والسلاح فقط عبر الحروب والتي استحالت الى حرب استنزاف على حساب كل اقتصادات أميريكا ..

من كان يصدق أن بلدا بعيدا جدا عن أميريكا مثل سورية يهز العقل الاميريكي التقليدي بعمق ويسقط حكومته العميقة ويهز عصره؟؟ .. هل بعد هذا يمكن أن نستغرب سر هذا الحقد والكراهية والعداء لشخص الرئيس الأسد والسيد حسن نصرالله اللذين قادا هذا الجهد الخطير في تحطيم عصر هيمنة اقتصاد الحروب؟؟ ..

بل من كان يصدق أن هؤلاء الشباب الابطال في الجيش السوري وحلفائه الذين انحدروا من القرى والأرياف الفقيرة والبيوت البسيطة في كل انحاء سورية واستبسلوا في سبيل بلدهم هم الذين قرروا في النهاية نتيجة الانتخابات الامريكية ووضعوا حدا لعصر حكومات صناع السلاح والحروب؟؟ .. وهم الذين أيقظوا النائمين في ما وراء الأطلسي .. وأخرجوا أولئك الطغاة من عصر الى عصر .. وأدخلوا العالم ربما في عصر جديد ..

ليس غرورا ولا توهما .. لكنه قدر دمشق أن تكون فيها محطات العصور .. ومراسي الزمن .. وان تبدأ منها المراحل ..

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